Tuesday, 1 May 2012
: Star Of Octagonal will line up in Saturday's Listed Rowley Mile at Hawkesbury more than a month after his last start second in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes.
| Star Of Octagonal|
Photo by Racing and Sports
The Todd Howlett-trained galloper has been a model of consistency this campaign having recorded one win and four minor placings from five starts.
Howlett expects something similar from his Octagonal five-year-old this Saturday despite stepping up to the mile more than a month since his latest outing when runner up in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes.
“I expect him to run a real good race,” Howlett said.
“He is going well and I think he is a horse who goes better a bit fresh.
“I've been really happy with him this campaign. He has done a pretty good job. All of his runs have been good and it is really satisfying seeing him go well.”
Connections had hoped to give Star Of Octagonal
another run between the Ajax Stakes and Rowley Mile.
“The wet weather and getting the right race for him, it has been hard to get the races between runs,” Howlett said.
“I had him in the All Aged but I thought that would be a bit hard for him.
“I even had him in the Tamworth Cup but they gave him 62.5kg.” Star Of Octagonal
has tasted success once over the 1600m journey previously when taking out the 2010 Scone Inglis Guineas.
The five-year-old on Saturday could be up against the likes of Foreteller
plus the Gai Waterhouse-trained duo of Western Symbol
and Fast Clip
who was fifth in the Group 1 Doncaster Mile on April 21.
A strong performance on Saturday could result in Star Of Octagonal
travelling north for the Queensland Winter Carnival where more lofty goals may be set.
“All going well we'll go to Scone and then we might even head up for the Stradbroke with him,” Howlett said.
Another to watch from the Todd Howlett stable is three-year-old Aroused
The Foreplay gelding cruised to a 4.5 length victory over 900m when making his race debut at Newcastle last Saturday.
“I was very pleased with him,” Howlett said.
“He missed the kick a bit, then Robert pushed him out a bit and the pair had them covered a long way out. Robert and him did it with ease.”
Aroused has always shown promise with the three-year-old going into his debut off a second in a 900m barrier trial at Muswellbrook.
“He is a very immature horse and he just needed the time,” Howlett said.
“He barrier trialled a month ago and went really well but he pulled up a little bit shin sore.
“I've mainly been getting him through that and not doing too much with him.”
Howlett is hopeful the gelding can progress through the grades during his maiden preparation with a race during the Scone Carnival in mid May the next target.
“I hope to take him to Scone,” Howlett said.
“There is a Class 1 over 1100m during the carnival on Cup Day.”
“He will definitely get to the midweeks and hopefully further. I think he has a lot to learn and has a big future.
“We'll just take it one run at a time. I wouldn't like to push him too hard. We'll just look after him.”