Irish import Keats to make his Australian debut at Caulfield for trainer Mike Moroney
Mike Moroney is expecting a forward showing from Irish import Keats when he makes his Australian debut at Caulfield on Saturday – he just doesn’t know yet in which race.
Keats is a son of Galileo who was formerly trained by Irish master Aidan O’Brien before being purchased at the Tattersalls Autumn Horses In Training Sale in October.
Keats, bought for $405,000, was the cheapest of three buys for the Moroney team at the sale and will be the second of those to make their Australian debut after English King ran ninth in the Bendigo Golden Mile last Saturday.
Moroney has confirmed 85-rater Keats will make his Down Under debut on Saturday, but it remains unknown whether it will be in the Group 3 Victoria Handicap (1400m) or the BM78 Handicap (1400m).
Keats was a lowly 26th in ballot order in the Victoria Handicap, which has 16 starters and four emergencies, but is guaranteed a start in the BM78 where the last-start Listed winner has 63.5kg.
Mike Moroney is hoping Keats can sneak into the Victorian Handicap field. Picture: Jay TownSource:News Corp Australia
If he doesn’t make the cut-off for the Victorian Handicap, apprentice Harry Grace would ride and take 3kg off the weight impost in the BM78.
“We would prefer to run in the Victoria Handicap, but if we have to he will start in the other race,” Moroney said.
“He is a sprinter-miler at the moment … we have left him a bull at this stage and that is the only real question mark.
“We have left him a colt because he has still got residual (value) as a stallion if he can win a couple of Group 1s.
“His work this morning was good and his trials have been OK, everyone who has ridden him has said we may need to put blinkers on which we have.
“He is a little bit field shy but he is a nice type of horse.”
Moroney said Keats was purchased to hopefully become a 2000m galloper but he thinks he can make his presence felt fresh over 1400m.
“A forward race wouldn’t surprise me, he is nice and forward and looks well,” Moroney said.
“He was purchased to make him into a possible 2000m horse and when you talk 2000m horses, you always hope they might be Cox Plate horses.
“But there is a long way to go before we could start thinking about that.”
Originally published asMoroney to unleash another import at Caulfield
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