Trainer Peter Gelagotis has underlined the Group 2 PB Lawrence Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 13th as the likely Spring Carnival Launchpad for popular veteran The Cleaner.
The Cleaner began his racing career under the guidance of Mick Burles in Tasmania, and rose to prominence through a number of brave and impressive racing campaigns that have so-far delivered nineteen wins and a further sixteen minors through fifty-four competitive starts.
Having been transferred to the care of Gelagotis following his most recent preparation, which concluded with a hapless run for seventh in the Listed Conquering WFA (1400m) at Launceston on December 9th, Gelagotis told Racing Ahead the Savoire Vivre gelding is building nicely towards his 2016 Spring Carnival campaign.
“I think he’s in pristine health,” Gelagotis said.
“He’s come through his rehab phase through the last three or four months and he’s in a good place, the horse is very, very well.
“I’m still learning about him and there’s a lot of water to go under the bridge to get to where we want to be, but we’re getting towards the pointy end of things now and there’s nothing more than anyone can do for that horse now, it’s up to him.
“We’re looking to kick him off on the 13th of August I think is the correct date, the PB Lawrence, and he’s well and truly on target for that.
“I’m quietly excited, because the horse has come back to full soundness, everything has settled down and everything has healed up.
“He’s not showing me he’s an eight-year-old or rising nine, he’s settled in very well.”
Gaining ballot-free entry into the 2014 edition of the Cox Plate when delivering a classy field defeat in the Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m), The Cleaner won the Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m) leading into a luckless ninth in the Moonee Valley feature; ending his Melbourne spring campaign third in the Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m).
Continuing to impress through a light autumn campaign in 2015, The Cleaner resumed in spring for an agonizingly-close second to Mourinho in the PB Lawrence Stakes before again returning to winning form in the Dato Tan Chin Nam Stakes.
Continuing his slick run of form with a pleasing performance for third in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m), The Cleaner produced a typically gutsy effort to finish seventh in his second attempt at the Cox Plate, in what was his only other start prior to the Conquering WFA.