Leading trainer Adam Durrant is eyeing off an Adelaide Cup campaign with talented three-year-old Come Play With Me, following his win in the Listed Aquanita Stakes (2000m) at Belmont Park.
Since finishing seventh in the WA Derby in April, Come Play With Me has now won four of his last five races, prompting Durrant to entertain thoughts of an east coast campaign next year.
The pace was slick in the early stages of the $100,000 event, with Debellatio, Song Of Vincent and Trakiato handy to the speed.
Starting a $1.90 TABtouch favourite Come Play With Me settled midfield, but had to lead the second half of the field up to the four leaders which established a big gap down the back straight.
Jockey Peter Knuckey never panicked though, and was able to claim the four leaders on the turn for home.
Belmont Guineas winner State Prosecutor drifted to as much as $2.50 prior to the jump, but was too far back to catch the favourite and had to settle for a second place.
Durrant said it was a last minute decision to start the gelding, and it was only his trackwork on Tuesday that swayed him to run in the race.
“There’s been a few sleepless nights,” he said.
“I changed my mind about 20 times about whether he is going to the paddock or not.
“Every time I said he’s going out, he would be in the paddock bucking around…he was going to the paddock four times this week.
“We made the right decision.”
Durrant said the gelding would now likely be sent for a spell, and come back in for an autumn campaign next year that could feature the Group 2 Adelaide Cup (3200m) in March.
“We do have a plan, I want to take him to Melbourne for the Mornington Cup and then maybe have a crack at the Adelaide Cup,” he said.
“He will miss the summer carnival this year…it’s too much to head through these grades then to the Perth (carnival).”
Meanwhile, Mizlecki, has recorded her third Listed race win, taking out the Belmont Oaks (2000m).
Aconite finished second, while Paddy’s Shadow battled on gamely for third despite not having a lot of luck.