Promising three-year-old Sertorius has the right form around him but trainer Bruce Elkington is hoping he can overcome a wide draw at Sandown on Wednesday.
The gelding, by champion stallion Galileo, is having his fourth start in the Ahern's Hcp (1400m) and will jump from barrier 11 in the 14-horse field.
"We're hoping for a bit of luck. He's drawn a bit awkwardly in 11 and we're hoping he has a bit of luck getting across and into a nice position," said Elkington who prepares Sertorius with co-trainer Jamie Edwards at Geelong.
"His form is very good but that's a pretty tough race tomorrow too."
Sertorius resumed with a solid win over subsequent Cranbourne maiden winner Catagious in a Kilmore maiden over 1200m on February 27 before running third to Blackie in a three-year-old rating 72 race over 1300m at Sandown on March 9.
The form out of that five-horse event has proven to be outstanding with Blackie going on to win the Group Two Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill, runner-up The Ruffian winning the Albury Guineas (1400m) and Weighted, who ran last, easily winning a Terang maiden.
"We certainly think he's got a future," Elkington said.
"His first-up win at Kilmore was very good from a wide barrier and at his next run at Sandown he got left a little bit when they sprinted at the 300 metres but he was certainly making up ground again towards the finish.
"He normally begins quickly but he got a bit of a bump when they jumped instead of bouncing in front which was the plan.
"He was back running third on the fence which is where we didn't want him to be especially on the Lakeside track at Sandown which tends to suit the on-pacers.
"He got left flat-footed but did keep working to the line."
Sertorius is a half-brother to the highly-promising two-year-old filly Fortune Of War, by General Nediym, who at her only start to date ran third to Golden Archer in the Listed Streets Ice Cream Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on March 5.
"We think he'll get over ground eventually, being by Galileo," Elkington said.
"But at this stage as a younger horse he's showing us a nice turn of foot which is pleasing.
"We're stepping up to the 1400 metres tomorrow and if he handles that well we've got a 1600-metre race in a couple of weeks picked out for him."
Written by AAP Tuesday, 29 March 2011 16:45