Queensland colt Better Than Ready will kick off a campaign geared towards Group 1 success when he lines up in the Listed Mick Dittman Plate (1000m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday.
The Kelly Schweida-trained galloper was a respectable fifth in the Newmarket Handicap in March and is now in line for a crack at Queensland’s winter sprint treble.
With Black Caviar retired, the BTC Cup (1200m) on May 11 has suddenly become an attainable goal.
“If he’s going well enough he’ll run next in the BTC Cup, if not there is a set weight race the same day for three-year-olds,” Schweida told Racing Queensland.
The BTC Cup was switched from Doomben to Eagle Farm in anticipation of Black Caviar’s arrival and that is likely to suit Better Than Ready.
With more room to move and a bigger straight, the son of More Than Ready would be given every chance to unleash his electric finish.
Schweida is also keen to target the Doomben 10,000 (1350m) on May 25 and the Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) on June 8.
With an increased winner’s purse of $1 million up for grabs, the Stradbroke is expected to attract a hot field this year.
The back up option if Better Than Ready fails to measure up to the top-tier events is the Group 2 Queensland Guineas on June 1.
In the Mick Dittman on Saturday the emerging galloper will start an odds-on favourite but Schweida has warned he is nowhere near peak fitness.
“If it wasn’t for the set weights he wouldn’t be running in the Mick Dittman as he’s still on the soft side and there’s a lot of improvement to come yet,” Schweida said.