The 2014 Metropolitan Handicap odds of Araldo have shortened significantly since betting opened and trainer Michael Moroney believes that the imported stayer is one of the best chances in the Group 1 event at Royal Randwick this weekend.
Araldo started his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a credible seventh in the Listed Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock Stakes (1700m) at Caulfield on August 30 and he finished within two lengths of the winner in the Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield on September 20.
The High Chaparral gelding won the Listed The Bart Cummings (2520m), on protest from Sea Moon, third-up during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival and Moroney told Racing Ahead that there are a number of aspects in favor of the six-year-old heading into the Group 1 The Metropolitan (2400m) this weekend.
“He is getting up to his right trip now at a mile and a half and it looks ideal for him,” Moroney said.
“It is very similar and he is probably going a little bit better this time than last.
“In saying that it is an even field The Metrop and there at least half a dozen that have good mile and a half form.
“I wouldn’t say that it is a great line-up, but it is an even sort of line-up and he is one of the real chances that gets the distance.
“I think going right handed is going to suit as well and most of his German form was that way around.”
Araldo was allocated the outside barrier when the 2014 The Metropolitan field was released yesterday, but Moroney believes that the wide draw will not be too much of a problem for the talented stayer.
The German Group 1 placegetter has been settled towards the tail of the field in most of his race starts to date and Moroney said that he will not be instructing jockey Jeff Lloyd to change the racing pattern of Araldo.
“I think that he will go back from that barrier, but that is his normal racing pattern,” Moroney said.
“When he was racing overseas he was always racing towards the back most of the time and we have just got to hope that something can take him into the race.
“If he can get on the back of something that is improving that would be ideal.”
Araldo opened at 2014 The Metropolitan Handicap odds of $41 with Ladbrokes Australia, but he has now been backed into a quote of $26, while Spillway ($4.40) remains a narrow favourite from Junoob ($6).