He may only be a 77-rater but the former Kiwi galloper Jimmysstar goes into 2024 with a deal of expectation after an encouraging return from a short spell.
Jimmysstar took to the jump-outs at Cranbourne on Monday, where he managed to run a comfortable second placing before the heavy 10 surface forced officials to abandon the rest of the card.
His managing owner Ozzie Kheir said later trainers Ciaron Maher and Dave Eustace had been glowing in their assessment of the four-year-old gelded son of Per Incanto and so hopes were high he could make a significant move up the ratings ladder this autumn.
“He’s going very, very well,” Kheir reported. “I think he will be very good. He’s up earlier than we thought, and the stable is rapt with him.”
A winner of four of his five career starts, Jimmysstar made his Australian debut at Bendigo as a 67-rater but that victory in BM70 followed by his Cranbourne romp just three weeks later signalled he was a horse of rare talent.
But with just a 77-rating, Kheir said the intention was to continue to build the horse’s resume to the point where he is able to chase a big race, potentially this autumn.
“He’s still got plenty of time to go through his grades,” Kheir said. “I am not sure what we’ll target with him, but he needs to get his rating up to get into a good race.
“I don’t think he’ll be out of place in group company in a few months’ time. I really think he’s got an exciting future.
“My view is that he’ll be running at group level whether it’s now or in six months’ time.”
Kheir said he expected Jimmysstar would run first-up by the end of January.