Classy colts Lord Of The Sky and West Africa are set to do battle in the National Patient Transport Handicap (1000m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
There are ten runners in the National Patient Transport Handicap field but bookmakers currently have the race priced as a virtual match race; with West Africa ($2.30) a slight favourite from Lord Of The Sky ($2.90), while Lucky Symbol is the next shortest-priced runner at $9.
Lord Of The Sky started his racing career with a fourth place finish behind Rowdy Belle in the International Breakfast Plate Maiden (1118m) at Werribee on June 25 before stamping himself as a colt to watch with a dominant three and a half lengths victory over $1 million colt Monkstone in the Procal Dairies Handicap (1000m) at Caulfield on July 13.
Impressive apprentice jockey Kayla Nisbet partnered Lord Of The Sky in his maiden win and is delighted to have the chance to partner the Danerich colt on Saturday when she makes her return from a broken foot.
”He’s a really nice, promising horse, so I was really happy for Robbie to put me back on,” Nisbet told AAP.
”He showed a lot of speed and was very professional.”
West Africa was well-backed before making his racing debut in the Craigieburn Central Plate (1112m) at Kilmore on November 12 but even trainer Mark Kavanagh was surprised by the Henrythenavigator’s dominant nine lengths victory.
Kavanagh told Racing Victoria that he was impressed by the debut performance on the three-year-old but believes he will get a better indication about how good the colt is when he takes on Lord Of The Sky and the rest of the field in the National Patient Transport Handicap this weekend.
“I think anybody that has a horse win its first start by nine lengths is pleasantly surprised,” Kavanagh said.
“He won a maiden on a Tuesday against questionable opposition and I would like to see him frank the form a bit and see him do it again before we get too carried away.
“He’s coming off a maiden win and it’s very hard for any horse to win in the city coming straight off a maiden and he’s up against some very promising opposition on Saturday.”
While all the attention will be on Lord Of The Sky and West Africa, they are not the only horses taking strong records into the National Patient Transport Handicap; with Adelaide-based Lucky Symbol and the Peter Moody-trained duo of Brotherly Secret and Colors Of The Wind taking undefeated records into the race.