While conceding that Russian Camelot is the country’s elite racehorse, owner Bob Peters will not shirk the daunting tasks facing his star Arcadia Queen in the upcoming month.
Arcadia Queen faded late into third place in last Saturday’s Group 1 Underwood Stakes at Caulfield, where Russian Camelot furthered his claim as being the elite middle-distance galloper in Australasia.
On face value, the contest was a little disheartening for Arcadia Queen, but Peters is not easily put off and intends on clashing again with the emerging star in the Caulfield Stakes and again two weeks later in the Cox Plate.
Asked if other spring options such as the $1 million G1 Empire Rose Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on October 31 were becoming more alluring post-Underwood, Peters said: “Not at this stage. I’ll keep going and see what happens.
“I can go to that race (Empire Rose) instead or as well.
“The path (to the Cox Plate) was always the Caulfield Stakes. She can get better, but she’ll have to.”
A foot abscess slowed Arcadia Queen’s early spring march but she bounced out of that with a fast-finishing second in the G2 Let’s Elope Stakes before her Underwood performance where she went with Russian Camelot for a time before the Danny O’Brien-trained galloper surged clear late.
“I think she was good until the last 50 (metres) and then she seemed to hit the wall,” Peters said. “But she might not have been quite ready for it.
“I think that horse might be the best horse in Australia at the moment and the other old horse (Humidor) that got her for second place, he is a pretty good horse too.”
Windstorm won a handicap for Peters at Caulfield last Saturday as he progresses to targets at Caulfield and then potentially to The Golden Eagle at Randwick.
His other horse currently in Victoria is Stocks Stakes runner-up from last Friday night, Perfect Jewel, who is entered to run again this Saturday in the 1400-metre Rose Of Kingston Stakes.