The process of adapting import New Endeavour to the Australian style of racing started long before he landed down under and co-trainer Adrian Bott hopes to see the fruits of that work at Randwick on Saturday.
New Endeavour will be one of three horses from the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott stable tackling the $1 million Silver Eagle (1300m), alongside ex-Singapore galloper Coin Toss and the lightly raced Kibou.
The latter pair probably need to finish top three to secure their place via an exemption into next month’s $10 million James Squire Golden Eagle (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens.
Bott said New Endeavour was identified as a promising horse and snapped up at the Goffs Sale in London the day before he ran second over a mile at Royal Ascot in June.
“He’s a horse that raced back of the field, he has a got turn of foot and great acceleration,’’ Bott said.
“In his most recent runs we rode him a little more prominent to help with the adaptation to the Australian racing. He was just as effective being able to do that.
“We put him on the radar to target the Golden Eagle. A decision was made to keep him racing in Europe with the Eagle in mind so he had a further couple of runs in Group company.
“It allowed him to arrive down here nice and fit and forward and ready to go.”
Following the Ascot placing, the four-year-old finished third in a Listed race at Newmarket and second in the Group 2 Hungerford Stakes (1408m) at Newbury in mid-August in the care of trainer Roger Varian.
He’s a $15 chance in TAB’s all-in Golden Eagle market while Coin Toss sits on the $26 line and Kibou $51.
“He handled the travel in good shape, arrived really well and straight onto his feed,’’ he said.
“He looks excellent in his condition and his coat. He was very fit coming down here, he’d had plenty of racing, so he hasn’t had to do too much.”
Both New Endeavour and Coin Toss only did some light work at Canterbury on Tuesday and Bott was on hand to watch them.
Coin Toss won four of his nine starts in Singapore including a Group 2 double in May culminating with the Singapore Guineas (1600m).
Bott said it’s a little harder to line up the Singapore form but from what he’s seen so far he suggests whatever Coin Toss does in the Silver Eagle he will improve on.
“We haven’t seen a lot of horses come out of Singapore to target the carnival but given what’s happened with the racing jurisdiction an opportunity was created there,’’ he said.
“I think he will adapt relatively quickly to the style of racing and I think (Saturday’s run) will be great benefit having not run for a while.”
Kibou looked on track for the Silver Eagle with his gutsy first-up win over 1200m at Randwick on September 16 but he produced a shock failure over the same course two weeks later.
Bott said that performance, 11th of 12 behind Airman as favourite, should be completely overlooked as a pointer to Saturday.
“I think remaining at the 1200m, and it was a high pressure race by the end of the day, it didn’t quite work out for him,’’ he said.
– Racing NSW