So far Merovee has failed to live up to his breeding or price tag and trainer Chris Waller admits he needs to improve to make an impact at Rosehill.
The four-year-old is by Frankel out of More Strawberries, one of the first mares sent to England to be served by the champion to southern hemisphere time.
Her owner John Singleton retains a share in Merovee who fetched $1.6 million at the 2016 Easter Yearling Sale.
He has won twice and been placed another three times from 13 starts and steps out in Saturday’s 2019 Membership Handicap (1800m) in which he takes on the in-form Sky Boy.
“He will appreciate the 1800 metre-distance, the good draw and a good strong rider in Kerrin McEvoy aboard,” Waller said.
“He needs to improve but his work has been good.”
Waller also has Savacool in the race but says the last-start Flemington winner is more than likely to be saved a week for the ATC Cup.
“I am going to make a decision in the morning as to whether she runs here or is saved for the ATC Cup next Saturday,” Waller said.
“The barrier draw (12) is a slight concern and she probably deserves to be running in the Listed race next week.”
European imports Araaja and Le Juge will line up in the race with each looking for a first Australian win.
“We expect Araaja to improve stepping up in distance but she still has a long way to go to be back in winning form, Waller said.
“I think improvement is on the cards.
“Le Juge is going okay and will be better suited by the 1800 metres. We will most likely ride him a little closer to the speed and let him roll along which I think will suit him better.”
The Anthony and Edward Cummings-trained Sky Boy is trying to win his fourth successive race with next month’s Group Two Villiers Stakes his summer target.
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