Trainer Gary Alton has confirmed that Historian will back-up in the 2014 Eagle Farm Cup, despite beating home just a single runner in the Group 3 Lord Mayor’s Cup (1615m) at Doomben on Saturday.
Historian won both the Group 3 ITM Sprint (1400m) at Hastings and the Group 1 Zabeel Classic (2000m) at Ellerslie during his summer campaign in New Zealand, but was unable to replicate that performance in the Lord Mayor’s Cup and finished over 11 lengths behind Angel Of Mercy.
Alton admitted that he was disappointed with the performance of Historian, but told The New Zealand Racing Desk that the son of Choisir had come out of the race in good condition and is confident that he will produce an improved performance in the Group 2 Eagle Farm Cup (2200m) this weekend.
“He was slow out and got back and he couldn’t get near them,” Alton said.
“The vet gave him a thorough going over after the race and the horse seems as good as gold now.
“He’ll be going around again on Saturday in the Eagle Farm Cup and that will suit him a lot better and Tye Angland will ride him.
“Eagle Farm will be a different story and I just want to show the Australians how good he really is.”
Historian has performed at the highest level of racing since he made his debut as a three-year-old and has form around a number of New Zealand-trained horses that went on to have success in feature races in Australia.
The tough gelding was placed behind Jimmy Choux, who went on to finish second in the Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m), in the 2011 Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m) and finished second behind subsequent Ranvet Stakes and The BMW winner Silent Achiever in the Group 1 New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie on March 8.
Historian will only need to beat home two runners to finish in the money in the Eagle Farm Cup, after only seven horses were included in the nominations for the Group 2 event, and he will face Kiwi rival Perfect Start.
Perfect Start will be meeting in a race for the first time and Historian has the edge over the daughter of Perfectly Ready based on their New Zealand form, but the four-year-old has performed fairly in both the Group 3 Chairman’s Handicap (2000m) and Group 3 Premier’s Cup (2200m) since arriving in Australia for the 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.