Earlier in the year connections of Jimmy Choux picked out the Cox Plate as a bit of a target for the spring carnival in 2011 and as it draws closer their drive to win the race has continued to strengthen.
The Cox Plate is now the number one goal for Jimmy Choux this season with the Australasian weight for age championship to determine just how good the horse is.
The kiwi horse dominated his competition at home culminating in his New Zealand Derby triumph in March.
Following that he came across to take on Australia’s bets three year olds and got the job done once again winning the Rosehill Guineas.
He pushed on to the AJC Derby as well but his failure there taught trainer John Bary plenty about how to handle the horse going forward.
Two things came out of the run, firstly that the horse is best fresh and second that the 2400m might be a bit too much of an ask.
Because of this he hasn’t even been nominated for the Caulfield Cup or Melbourne Cup, instead all focus is being concentrated on the Cox Plate.
“He just came to the end of the long season and it was a harder track,” Bary said.
“But I also think they found him out over 2400m. We know he’s not a stayer – he’s a sprinter/miler – and they got him.
“He had two months in the paddock and has really developed. I measured him yesterday and he’s now 16’2 (hands) and he’s really strengthened up.”
Jimmy Choux is still a couple of weeks off his first trial with Bary wary of keeping plenty in the tank for when they make the trip across the Tasman.
His schedule at home looks like getting underway first up in the Group 1 Mudgway Stakes, a real form race where he’ll measure up against fellow Australian raiders Wall Street, Mufasa, Scarlett Lady and Keep The Peace.
When he does come across to Australia he’ll be first up into the Cox Plate as they hope to replicate the same kind of preparation which led into the Rosehill Guineas.
They may still elect to have another run on Australian soil though, albeit with a suitable break in between.
At this stage it could be something like the Group 1 Emirates Stakes where he’d drop back to the 1600m.
Australia could also be a launching pad to further international exposure as well with the Champions Mile in Hong Kong shaping as a real possibility.