Next stop on the path towards a Melbourne Cup start for Alfarris will be The Bart Cummings after the gelding scored a fighting win at Flemington.
Alfarris held out stablemate Ventura Storm by a nose to win the Very Special Kids Pin & Win Plate on Saturday.
Senior Lindsay Park trainer David Hayes said Alfarris was being set for The Bart Cummings at Flemington on October 5 which affords the winner a ballot exemption into November’s Melbourne Cup.
Jaameh, a Shadwell Stud-owned stablemate of Alfarris, won the corresponding race before running a close second to Avilius in The Bart Cummings last year.
Alfarris has been weighted on 50kg for the Melbourne Cup and needs to win The Bart Cummings to force his way into the final field of 24.
“He’ll be really fit and has been trained to peak for The Bart Cummings,” Hayes said.
“Hopefully he can do it after just getting beaten with Jaameh last year, beaten by Avilius which is a good horse and hopefully there’s not as good a horse in it this year.”
An imported European-bred galloper, Hayes said Alfarris was now acclimatised to Australian conditions.
“He’s in his second prep and they’re always better in their second preps,” Hayes said.
“If you watch the Andrew Ramsden, they’re all talking about the quinella (Steel Prince and Surprise Baby), but he was five wide the trip and ran a great fourth.”
On a path to defending his Moonee Valley Cup win, Ventura Storm’s second impressed the Hayes.
“He loomed up like he was the winner and for some reason he threw his head like he got hit over the nose, but I don’t think he did,” Hayes said.
“He was doing it a little last preparation, but what I did like was he recovered and kicked and nearly won the race.”