Co-trainer Wayne Hawkes is confident that Snoopy can return to winning form when he contests the 2015 Caulfield Guineas Prelude at Caulfield this weekend.
Snoopy made his racing debut with a dominant four lengths win at Seymour on January 22 and he started his 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a narrow win over More Than Most in The Cove Hotel Handicap (1300m) at Sandown on August 12.
The Lope De Vega colt made it three wins from as many race starts when he recorded a narrow victory in the Hygain Handicap (1400m) at Ballarat on August 27 and he was well-backed in the lead-up to the Listed Pin And Win Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on September 12, but he was never able to find clear running in the straight and he could finish no better than ninth behind Bon Aurum.
Hawkes said that he is staggered that Snoopy is now a genuine contender for a race like the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) that will be held at Caulfield on October 10, but he told Racing Ahead that he believes the three-year-old can stamp himself as one of the favourites for the $1 million race by taking out the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) on Saturday.
“He came through like he had a barrier trial,” Hawkes said.
“Snoopy was never in my wildest dreams a Caulfield Guineas chance early in the piece, but if he could win this then he would be one of the favourites.
“I can’t see why he couldn’t get then job done on Saturday, he has done everything else right.
“He has to jump in class, but it is a similar type of race to the other day.
“He is on song and he is going well.
“He is going to be there something thereabouts.”
Team Hawkes are chasing their first win in the Caulfield Guineas Prelude, while they have previously taken out the Caulfield Guineas with Lonhro (2001) and All Too Hard (2012).
Snoopy is currently available at 2015 Caulfield Guineas Prelude odds of $11 with Ladbrokes, while Mick Price-trained Ready For Victory ($3.30) is a clear favourite from Pin And Win Stakes winner Bon Aurum ($8.50), Mike Moroney-trained Tulsa ($9.50), last start winner Spieth ($11), Gai Waterhouse-trained Dark Steel ($11) and the enigmatic Mr Individual ($13).