Trainer Stephen McKee is weighing up his options as to how progressive three-year-old Hasabro proceeds to the Gr.1 VRC Derby (2500m) on November 3.
The son of Savabeel finished a luckless second at Geelong on Monday in a maiden 1755m, where he was held up in the straight before charging home.
“I was pleased with how he went, but it was a bit disappointing as he should have won,” McKee said. “As a result he has not gone up in the ratings and he hasn’t got much more prizemoney in the bin, so it just leaves us in the cart a little bit as to where we go from here.
“I wouldn’t have minded going straight into the Geelong Classic (Listed, 2200m) in three weeks as he is pretty fit already, but I will have to get a feel for what the likelihood is that he will get in. It is no good sitting on our hands and not getting in the Derby later on.
“It may well mean we have to split it up and run in another maiden in ten days or so, but I would have preferred only one more run.”
McKee said the feedback from rider Damian Lane was positive.
“He said he should have won by two or three lengths and that he gave him a good feel and he looks like a horse who will go a lot further.”
Meanwhile, Hasabro’s Group One-winning older sister Hasahalo is not far away from resuming.
“She trialed a couple of weeks ago at Te Rapa and she might kick off at Matamata on the 13thdepending on track conditions.
Hasahalo will most likely target the Gr.2 Coupland's Bakeries Mile (1600m) at Riccarton next month, although McKee hasn’t ruled out having her join her younger sibling in Melbourne.
“I said to Albert (Bosma of Go Racing) to keep in mind the Myer Classic (Gr.1, 1600m) in Melbourne as well. She is a horse that would probably love a mile at Flemington, but we might be a couple of weeks short of being able to get her ready for it.”
McKee will have four runners at Ruakaka on Wednesday and has labelled juvenile Tappy's One as his best chance.
“He’s strengthened since his first run and he lost quite a bit of momentum when checked, which you can’t do over 800m. I think with an even run from the inside draw he should be right in the thick of it.” – NZ Racing Desk