Zoutori will aim to become the first horse since Lankan Rupee in 2014 to complete the Newmarket Handicap – T.J. Smith Stakes double when he lines up in the $2.5 million sprint feature at Royal Randwick on Saturday.
The Matthew Ellerton and Simon Zahra-trained gelding had his final key hit out at Flemington on Friday morning when finishing third in an 800-metre jumpout, where they clocked a slick time of 46.01.
“He had a beautiful jumpout on Friday he ran third in that,” co-trainer Simon Zahra explained.
“They ran quite good time, he has done extremely well between runs so we gave him a good hit out.
“He will head up to Sydney on Thursday and we are excited to get him there and compete in the T.J. Smith and maybe the All Aged Stakes a couple of weeks later.”
Zoutori has not raced since his win in the Newmarket Handicap on March 6. The only time he has gone the clockwise direction was during an unsuccessful Queensland campaign during his three-year-old season.
“He has obviously been to Brisbane and he has probably had three or four gallops the reverse way at home and seems to have handled it well,” Zahra explained.
“He is a lot more seasoned now and is quite professional and doing everything right, so we are excited for next Saturday.”
Luke Currie who partnered the son of Zoustar to G1 glory has again been booked to ride.
Zoutori has been marked a $26 chance for the T.J. Smith Stakes with Nature Strip occupying the top spot in betting at $4.50.