Although he was a beaten favourite last weekend in the Memsie Stakes trainer Mick Price is confident Heart Of Dreams can bounce back at his next run.
Heart Of Dreams came agonisingly close to scoring a win at his first up run with King’s Rose only beating him by the smallest of margins on the line.
It’s a common story for the horse which always seems to be close to the money but so often runs into one who’s just that little bit better.
Price says he was overall happy with the performance though and he’ll now move on to the Group 1 Underwood Stakes towards the end of September.
“It was a good ride, we had the race pegged out right, unfortunately he had a triple Group 1 winner slip streaming him,” he said.
“He’ll run in the Underwood, have three weeks between runs.”
Price says there will be no issues with going straight to Group 1 level after just the one run this season and that the horse is still holding plenty of residual fitness from the winter.
“He’s probably a little bit more forward because he did race in Queensland,” he said.
“I would think he’d be pretty right in the Underwood, he’s won it before.”
That being said Price was working to play down the chances of his horse, saying while he’ll run well don’t expect anything special.
“There’s no improvement in the horse he is what he is, easy form to read,” Price said.
In fact he hinted that if there was another suitable option he might not even run him at Group 1 level.
“He’s too highly weighted for the handicaps so you have to run in the weight for age,” he said.
Another issue for the horse is that his ideal distance is probably over 1800m but there’s not a lot fo top flight races around for that kind of trip.
“What’s against him is that he doesn’t get a strong 2000m,” Price said.
“Caulfield is a nice flat track so it’s a softish 2000m.”
In terms of the spring program after the Underwood Stakes that’s still up in the air, however it appears as if the Cox Plate won’t be one of the options due to a combination of distance and a likely strong field.
“He hasn’t proven to be a Cox Plate horse, I’m sure as the spring unrolls there’ll be some nice 3 year olds coming through as well so I’m not thinking Cox Plate with him,” he said.
“We’ll have to get to the Underwood and work it out from there.”
Price has also poured water on any move to Hong Kong saying while it may be an option for a top liner he doesn’t believe Heart Of Dreams is quite at that level.