The McEvoy stable lines up one-third of the field in Saturday’s $100,000 Listed Hill Smith Stakes (1800m) at Morphettville, but concedes Victorian raider Ain’tnodeeldun is the horse to beat.
Calvin McEvoy said the jungle drums had been beating loudly regarding Ain’tnodeeldun’s ability for a while in Melbourne and it was impossible to ignore his dominant maiden win.
“The Freedman horse, even though it’s only won a maiden, they’ve been talking it up for a long time and it’s the one to beat,” McEvoy said.
SA’s leading training duo have booked Ryan Hurdle to ride The Brumby (pictured), who comes back to Adelaide after two luckless runs Melbourne. Stable jockey Barend Vorster will continue his association with promising filly Victoria Quay, while Jake Toeroek will ride Zeppa and Paul Gatt will partner The Olympian.
“The Brumby is the one with the form,” McEvoy said of the stable’s quartet.
“He’s got the Aysar form, who is obviously a good chance in the Caulfield Guineas.
“I sent him over from Melbourne on Thursday morning and I can’t fault him.
“Ryan Hurdle has already had a sit on, which is important, but I’ve got a lot of respect for Victoria Quay. It’s a big step up from a Balaklava maiden to this, but it’s been a long-term plan to get her to a race like this.
“She’s a smart, young staying filly in the making. Barend has been at home doing all the work with her. He was happy to ride either of them, but was happy to stick with the filly after winning on her last time and I can’t really split them.”
McEvoy said he was looking forward to seeing what quality four-year-old Xilong could do first-up in the Group 3 Northwood Plume Stakes over 1200m at Caulfield after a strong Adelaide carnival, where she won the Group 2 Euclase Stakes before running seventh in the Group 1 Goodwood behind Trekking.
“She’s a very good mare and I don’t think the cut out of the track will bother her,” McEvoy said.
“She’s only had the one trial but has also had a little jump-out at home at Angaston. She’ll be improved by whatever she does but she’ll roll along, control the race and be there for a long way.”