Progressive sprinter Cape Kidnappers may have had his winning streak ended when he suffered a narrow defeat to Heart Testa in the Diamond Beach Handicap (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens on November 16 but trainer Kelly Schweida said that he is happy with the condition of the six-year-old heading into the Group 3 George Moore Stakes (1200m) at Doomben on Saturday.
Cape Kidnappers was well-backed in the lead-up to the Diamond Beach Handicap and was unable to run down Chris Waller-trained Heart Testa but Schweida believes that the gelding had plenty of excuses for just the third loss of his career.
“He never travelled down as well as I would have liked,” Schweida told Racing Ahead.
“It was his first time away but I thought that the one was quiet good and there wasn’t as much speed that we thought Zaratone would go along.
“They sprinted at the top of the straight and put a length and a half on them but he was still strong late.”
Cape Kidnappers will face the toughest test of his career in the George Moore Stakes this weekend, taking on a field that includes Famous Seamus, Liesele, Phelan Ready and Benny’s Buttons, but according to Schweida is well-placed in the Group 3 event.
“He should only get 54kg, which would suit him well,” Schweida said.
“It is a pretty strong race on paper.
“It lightened him off a little bit the trip so I am glad that it is three weeks between runs because I I don’t think he could have copped two weeks after the Sydney run.
“I am pretty much happy with him.”
Schweida’s star galloper Better Than Ready defeated the majority of the likely George Moore Stakes field in the Listed Keith Noud Handicap (1200m) but will not contest the race after being sent to the spelling paddock.
Schweida said that he believes that Cape Kidnappers is capable of performing well in Group races right around Australia and will be doing everything that he can to avoid entering his two star performers for the same sprinting races.
“I try to keep them apart if I can,” Schweida said.
“Not being a very big stable, if you get two or three that can gallop you don’t want to be clashing heads with them.
“I’m not real sure (what races Cape Kidnappers will target) but from early February right through to June there is a good race somewhere in Australia for him so it shouldn’t be hard to keep them apart.”
Schweida is chasing his first win at Group level since he took out the Group 1 Winter Stakes (1400m) with Nova Star at Eagle Farm during the 2007 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.