Trainer Rodney Northam is confident that Odyssey Moon will have no problems handling Moonee Valley in the 2015 McKenzie Stakes on Saturday after the talented colt worked strongly at the tight-turning track this morning.
Odyssey Moon is set to make his Melbourne racing debut in the McKenzie Stakes and Northam was keen to give the Snitzel colt an opportunity to look at the track before the Listed event this weekend.
Northam told Racing Ahead that jockey Damien Oliver said that Odyssey Moon had no issue handling the unique venue and he is confident that the track will not be an issue if the three-year-old fails to fire in the McKenzie Stakes.
“He had a nice look at the Valley,” Northam said.
“Damien threw his leg over him and got a nice feel of him and he was really happy with the way that he went around.
“He was fine, he worked on the outside.
“He is a very lazy worker and he only did what he had too, but he handled the track fine and Damien said that he felt great and his action felt great.
“He was really happy that he would be very competitive on Saturday.
“Fitness wise he wouldn’t have blown a candle out this morning and fitness won’t be an issue.
“We will just give him a nice easy week now and have him nice and fresh to compete on Saturday.”
Odyssey Moon stamped himself as a horse to follow when he finished second in both the Group 2 Skyline Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) during the 2015 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival and Northam is expecting big things of the colt in the spring.
Northam believes that Odyssey Moon is forward enough to win the McKenzie Stakes, but he believes that his star three-year-old will take benefit from the run heading towards the Listed Henry Bucks Best Dressed Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on September 12, the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) on September 26 and the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 10.
“I think he is going well enough to win and I would like him to definitely be running in the first three with a little bit of improvement when he steps out over a bit more ground,” Northam said.
“He is probably more a miler and the fact that he was Group 1 placed over seven furlongs at two, you would expect him to be a miler at three.
“After Saturday I think that we will go to the 1400 metres race in three weeks’ time at Flemington and then probably to the Guineas Trial and then the Guineas all going well.”
Odyssey Moon could face up to 21 rivals in the McKenzie Stakes and is set to take on the likes of Manhattan Blues, El Greco, Demonstrate, Danuki and Devils Pinch.