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New Tactics to get the best out of Haky

Trainer Archie Alexander hopes a change of tactics and gear change will revive the fortunes of import Haky at Sandown on Saturday.

Alexander has taken over from dual Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe-winning trainer John Hammond with the quirky chestnut and is uncertain what to expect in the Listed $150,000 Sandown Cup (3200m).

“I’ve only had him for a short time so we’re going into the unknown a little bit,” Alexander said.

“But he’s shown no sign of being tired or sore. He’s eaten up and so he’ll head to Sandown on Saturday.”

With several horses holding nominations for the Cup and the Group 2 Zipping Classic, Alexander hopes Haky might face a smallish field.

Whatever the case, the gelding will be given the chance to redeem his best form by being ridden more quietly.

In three Australian starts, the six-year-old has led with a best result of third behind Prince Of Arran and True Self in the Geelong Cup.

He was a last-start eighth in the Hotham Handicap after racing on the speed.

“He’ll definitely be ridden quieter,” Alexander said.

“Jordan Childs will ride him and, ideally, in the first half of the race, he’ll get some cover.

“In the second half, he’ll start building into it.

“I’m not saying it’s the right way or the only way to ride him but he’s been put in front every time and it hasn’t always worked out.”

Alexander said Haky would have a noseband applied to help the horse settle better.

“If the worst comes to the worst on Saturday, he’ll go for a spell and we’ll bring him back and start over again,” he said.

“At this stage, he’s showing no signs of being tired.”

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Gailo Chop still in Kingston Town Frame

OTI Racing director Terry Henderson says veteran galloper Gailo Chop is on track for next month’s Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot on December 7, despite an unplaced effort in the Mackinnon Stakes.

Gailo Chop led the $2 million Mackinnon Stakes at Flemington on Saturday, before he faded to finish 11th behind Magic Wand.

The Matthew Williams-trained gelding, a winner of the Mackinnon Stakes in 2015, showed signs of returning to some of his best form with a third placing behind WA galloper Black Heart Bart in the Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield in September.

Henderson, who had Tom Melbourne place in the Railway Stakes in 2017, said although it wasn’t his best performance, his recent form still warranted a trip to Perth in the hope he could capture a third Group 1 in Australia.

“Gailo Chop came out of his run well,” he told TABRadio.

“He didn’t finish off that race as well as we would have liked.

“When we got relatively easy mid-sectionals we thought he’d be right in it.

“He seems very well and at this stage he’s still going to come across for the Kingston Town barring anything going wrong.”

OTI Racing also had Harbour Views and Night’s Watch in line for a trip across the Nullarbor in the lead up to Melbourne Cup week.

Henderson said Night’s Watch’s 13th placed effort in the Mackinnon was one of a “tired horse”.

“Damien Oliver said after the race he just felt he’d had enough and was after the paddock,” he said.

“I think that’s what will happen.”


Article: Racing and Wagering Western Australia.

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