Jockey Kerrin McEvoy is confident that Long John will get a good run into the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) from barrier one tomorrow.
Long John remains the favourite in 2013 Caulfield Guineas betting markets but drifted slightly after the barrier draw was announced on Tuesday morning.
McEvoy told Racing Ahead that Long John may need a little bit of luck but does not believes that the inside gate is a disadvantage for the Street Cry gelding.
“I suppose it is good in a way that we are going to have a ground saving run for the first part and obviously we will need to get the breaks when we have to get out and get rolling,” McEvoy said.
“We have looked through the form and there are going to be good chances sitting in front of me in the run and hopefully I can be third, fourth or fifth following those chances into the last three furlongs.”
Long John has performed strongly this preparation, finishing third in the Listed McKenzie Stakes (1200m) before winning the Listed Henry Bucks Best Dressed Stakes (1400m), and produced a strong Caulfield Guineas trial when he finished strongly behind Éclair Big Bang and El Roca in the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m).
McEvoy said that the fast-finishing performance indicates that Long John will relish the step-up to a mile and believes that the Caulfield Guineas Prelude is the strongest form line heading into the $1 million race.
“On his last run the mile is really going to suit him,” McEvoy said.
“They look an even lot and you need to show respect to Divine Calling and Cluster who were good runs at Moonee Valley but the horses that have been around Caulfield in El Roca, the winner and my fellow I think that is the stronger form line.”
Long John will be advantaged by a quick tempo in the Caulfield Guineas tomorrow but McEvoy has a plan in place in case the speed isn’t on in the early stages of the race.
“I think Divine Calling will settle closer this time and El Roca and Éclair Big Bang will be handy,” the leading jockey said.
“I’m just a little bit reserved as to how to how quick they will go but hopefully if they don’t go too quick I will be right on the back of them.”
McEvoy is chasing his second win in the Caulfield Guineas after winning the 2011 edition of the race with Helmet.