A win by Ready For Victory down the Flemington straight on Saturday will see the Mick Price trained colt head to Sydney for the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill on March 21.
Ready To Victory is facing the starter for the first time on Saturday in the Listed $120,000 Festival Of Racing 1000 (1000m) and has been posted the $3.80 second favourite with Ladbrokes.com.au on the back of some good trackwork reports.
The More Than Ready colt’s racing debut had been delayed because of a virus but Price said that he is ready to go to the races following a second in an 800m Cranbourne barrier trial on February 23.
“He’s pretty educated, he’s full of himself, he’s a good colt and I think he’ll be hard to beat,” Price told RSN.
Price accepts that it would be a big ask for Ready For Victory to take on a slick field of two year olds in the Golden Slipper at his second race start but is willing to have a go if he makes a winning debut this weekend.
“It will be very new to him to take him to Sydney and expect him to go the reverse way in what looks to be a pretty hot Slipper this year,” Price said.
“But you certainly can’t win it sitting at home so if he does win (at Flemington) that’s where he’ll go.”
Nick Hall has taken the ride on Ready For Victory and the colt will jump from barrier five in the nine horse field.
The Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahra trained Heatherly heads the market order for the Festival Of Racing 1000 at $3.30 with Lindsay Park’s smart filly Claudia Jean on the third line of betting at $5.50.
Heatherly led all of the way to win on debut over 1000m at Moonee Valley on February 8 then finished fifth, after leading again, to Fontiton in the Group 2 $200,000 Sportingbet Blue Diamond Prelude (F) (1100m) at Caulfield on February 14.
Claudia Jean has recovered from a hoof injury that saw her miss a start in the Group 1 $1m Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield last weekend and will be wearing blinkers for the first time on Saturday.
The Not A Single Doubt filly also won at her first race start over 1000m down the Flemington straight on December 20 before heading to the Gold Coast to finish seventh to Le Chef in the $2m Jeep Magic Millions 2yo Classic (1200m) on January 10.