After an untimely interruption to his career, Vegadaze is primed to get it back on track starting with the Group Two Expressway Stakes.
The 1200m-sprint will now be run at Randwick with officials switching Saturday’s meeting from Rosehill because of the forecast for extreme heat in Sydney’s west.
Either track is fine with trainer Anthony Cummings who put Vegadaze in the Expressway as a late entry when the gelding showed him there was no need to wait any longer for his return.
The four-year-old has not raced since August when he was galloped on during the Group Two Missile Stakes won by Godolphin’s Alizee, the favourite for the Expressway.
“He has come back well and I think he is up to these horses,” Cummings said.
“He has always raced against this class and was going so well I decided to put him in this race when the field was originally small.”
There were seven original entries for the Expressway with four added on Tuesday.
A field of 10 has been declared with Kolding the most significant late nomination and now the second-elect behind Alizee.
The Chris Waller-trained Kolding emerged as a serious horse during the spring with wins in the Group Three Bill Ritchie, Group One Epsom Handicap and the inaugural $7.5 million Golden Eagle.
Vegadaze won his first three starts and finished second to another Waller-trained star, The Autumn Sun, in the Hobartville Stakes in February last year to stamp his class.
Cummings is not certain whether sprinting is Vegadaze’s forte or if he will be extended to longer this time around.
“He has been nominated for the TJ Smith and for the Doncaster Mile so we will see what he tells us,” he said.
Cummings will also be represented in the two other stakes races on the program, with Philizzy to run in the Widden Stakes and Gorshin in the Canonbury Stakes.
Both are Group Three races for two-year-olds over 1100m and valuable pointers to the Golden Slipper in March.
Philizzy created a big impression with her win on debut and connections resisted the temptation to back her up a week later in the $2 million Magic Millions on January 11.
The Magic Millions winner Away Game will be among her opposition in the five-horse field on Saturday.
Debutant Gorshin is a half-brother to the Cummings-trained Fiveandahalfstar, winner of the 2012 Victoria Derby and 2013 BMW.
Both juveniles will be ridden by Christian Reith while Tim Clark, who has won twice on Vegadaze, will be back aboard.