Trainer Richard Jolly believes that Kushadasi has the class required to be competitive when he makes his Melbourne racing debut in the Group 3 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Kushadasi has only had four career race starts, but finished his winter preparation with two impressive wins at Morphettville before returning to the races with a strong second behind the talented Hucklebuck in the Dominant Handicap (1200m) on February 1.
The Choisir gelding pushed Hucklebuck, who has also been included in the CS Hayes Stakes final field, all the way in the Dominant Handicap and Jolly told Racing Ahead this morning that the three-year-old took plenty of benefit out of the run.
“There wasn’t a lot between them and both horses have taken improvement out of that,” Jolly said.
“I am pretty excited to see where this horse is at.
“He is really well.
“He was a pretty fit horse heading into it, he had a jump out and a trial, and been in work for almost 12 weeks.
“The run certainly didn’t harm him and he is really the type of horse that will run a trip just because of the way that he relaxes and hits the line strongly.”
Jolly has included Kushadasi in the nominations for the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington on March 1 and believes that the classy gelding may be the most talented horse that he has ever trainer.
The leading Adelaide trainer is confident that Kushadasi will perform well in the CS Hayes Stakes this weekend, but is of the opinion that the $100,000 yearling purchase will be even better when he steps up to the mile and beyond.
“He has shown every bit of ability as the best horses that I have had,” Jolly said.
“In his first preparation we were on wet tracks and probably suspect form, but he still won those races well and he has come back against a quality horse and was very competitive it over an unsuitable trip.
“It is all probably ahead of him at this stage, but I still think that he is up to the level he is running at on Saturday.
“If anything I think he will be better when he gets to the mile; even the 1400 could be a touch sharp for him.
“He won a 1500 metre race his third start and really just joined in over the last 100.
“Once he gets to a mile and probably bit further is where I think that you will see the best of him.”
Jolly is chasing his first win at Group level since he won the Group 3 Chairman’s Veolia Stakes (2000m) with Hioctdane in April of last year.