Six-year-old gelding Pelicano didn’t have a lot of luck in the Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1600m) on December 13, which was his first start in 12 months, however he is set to get another chance this Friday in the Group 3 Summer Cup (2000m) at Royal Randwick Racecourse.
Pelicano is one of 15 potential stayers featured on the Boxing Day feature race’s nominations yet his place on the final field will be determined by trackwork on Tuesday morning, according to trainer Tony McEvoy.
“I’ll make the decision on Tuesday morning and if the horse pleases me I plan to run him,” the trainer told Sky Racing.
“He’s really done very well since the Villiers so hopefully he works well for me tomorrow and we can go ahead for Friday.
“What I want to do is just test his fitness to make sure he’s right to go out to 2000 metres, and his work will decide that.”
McEvoy added that the gelding would run in the Listed Gosford Cup (2100m) on January 9 if the 2014 Summer Cup doesn’t work out.
Pelicano finished runner-up in the Listed Ballarat Cup (2200m) and won the Listed Werribee Cup (2600m) last summer, however he was then found to have a chip on a sesamoid bone that required surgery and a long layoff from the track.
Nearly 12 months to the day after his Werribee Cup win, Pelicano returned to racing in the Villiers Stakes. He got midfield on the fence out of the gates before making his way inside as gaps appeared around the turn. He held his ground late but finished five lengths behind winner Rudy in eighth place.
Still McEvoy was pleased with the run and is looking forward to returning the gelding to 2000m races.
“It was a very good run. I couldn’t have been more pleased,” McEvoy said.
A total of seven horses could make the trip to the Summer Cup via the Villiers Stakes, including runner-up I’m Imposing.