Volkhere has been included in the 2015 Caloundra Cup field, but the consistent stayer may require some luck in running after he was allocated barrier 11 for the Listed event at the Sunshine Coast on Saturday.
Volkhere started his autumn preparation with a credible effort behind The Peak in the National Construction Management Handicap (1400m) at the Sunshine Coast on March 7 before he battled home to finish fourth in the Queensland Accounting Group Handicap (1615m) at Doomben on March 21.
The Dehere gelding hit the line strongly when he finished third behind Perplexity in the Acquired Awareness Handicap (2200m) at Doomben on April 11 and he produced another tough effort in the Group 3 Chairman’s Handicap (2200m) at the Gold Coast on April 25 before he chased home subsequent Doomben Cup winner Pornichet in the Toowoomba Cup on May 2.
Volkhere will be stepping up to 2400 metres for the first time in his racing career, but the Robert Heathcote-trained galloper gives every impression that he will relish the step-up in trip.
While Volkhere was the big loser of the 2015 Caloundra Cup barrier draw, Chris Waller-trained Index Linked has drawn ideally for the $175,000 event and he will jump from barrier four with veteran jockey Damian Browne in the saddle.
Index Linked has returned to a semblance of his best form in 2015 after being plagued by injury issues last year and he was arguably unlucky not to record a maiden win at Group level when he finished second behind Epingle in the Chairman’s Handicap.
The Chairman’s Handicap is set to be a key form guide to the Caloundra Cup and Perplexity, Tremec and Sir John Hawkwood will also back-up from the Group 3 event in the Caloundra Cup this weekend.
One of the most interesting runners in the Caloundra Cup is Matt Laurie-trained Escado, who will be dropping back in class after he failed to fire in his two race starts during the 2015 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival to date.
Escado finished a close second behind Sertorius in the Group 3 Easter Cup (2000m) at Caulfield on April 4, but he finished 12th in both the Group 2 Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast on April 25 and the Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) on Saturday.
Freton (barrier ten), Ongoing Venture (barrier nine), Luckzat (barrier three), Supercoach (barrier 12), Wimpole Street (barrier five) and Kobi Creek (barrier one) round out the 2015 Caloundra Cup field.