Consistent Gai Waterhouse-trained gelding Under The Sun is chasing his second straight Listed victory in the Winter Challenge (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
Under The Sun has been up and running since February but has continued to produce excellent results and has relished the rain affected tracks that have been found in Sydney this winter.
The No Excuse Needed gelding took a while to get going this campaign and performed very poorly when finishing tenth behind Julienas in the Listed Sky High Stakes (1900m).
He returned returned to a more suitable distance and found his best form with second place finishes in the Cargo Bar Handicap (1400m) and Gifts.Com.au Handicap (1400m) at Randwick before breaking through for the first win of his campaign in the TAB.com.au Handicap (1400m) a fortnight later.
The rising five-year-old was very unlucky when finished second behind Mic Mac in the Listed Civic Stakes (1350m) but was able to record the first black type racing victory of his career a fortnight later in the Listed Winter Stakes (1400m).
Under The Sun was most impressive in the Winter Stakes and took up the running early before drawing away to record a very comfortable three and a half lengths victory.
Under The Sun’s Winter Challenge task has not been made easy for the handicapper, who has allocated him 575.kg, and he will need to be at his best to defeat a strong field that includes a number of interesting runners.
French import Bayrir is set to finally make his Australian racing debut and will jump from barrier one carrying 59kg.
The Medicean entire has competed in some of the most prestigious races in the world, including the Group 1 Prix De L’Arc De Triomphe (2400m) and Group 1 Hong Kong Vase (2400m), and could go on to contest some of the major races during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival if he is able to acclimatize to Australian conditions.
Evergreen stayer Ironstein will return to the races in the Winter Challenge while Kinnersely, Bold Glance, Wazn, Coup Ay Tee and Pretty Pins are all set to back up from the Winter Stakes.