There’s a higher sense of expectation from the Peter and Paul Snowden stable about import Huetor at Rosehill on Saturday than at his local debut last month now he’s shown what he’s made of.
Co-trainer Peter Snowden said everyone involved was pleasantly surprised when the gelding won over a mile at Newcastle on The Hunter program so the bar is much higher in the Cabra Bowls Handicap (2000m).
A race like the Group 3 Summer Cup over the 2000m later this month is looming as a potential target if Huetor runs up to what Snowden has been seeing on the training tracks in the past few weeks.
What was exceptional about Huetor’s Newcastle win, off one barrier trial, was the fact he overcame an on-pace pattern of the day and clocked easily the fastest last 600m of his race, 36.15 (Punter’s Intelligence), in sweeping to victory.
“He came on a lot from that trial to the race, I think he’s gone on a lot more since that run to this run,’’ Snowden said.
“All his form was at 2200m-2400m and when we got him we thought he’d be one paced and not have much dash in him. He showed a great turn of foot at Newcastle and not many came from back in the field that day.
“I’ve been really impressed with what he’s done since the run. The longer the work is getting the more he’s liking it.”
The French five-year-old rises 3kg for his troubles as he stays at Benchmark 78 level at Rosehill so it will be a stern test to pass.
Snowden said he’d be disappointed if Huetor, $7.50 with TAB on Friday, didn’t hold his form given he’s stepping up to a distance that he should be more comfortable with.
“I didn’t think he’d do what he did. He’s shown me a lot more than what I expected that’s for sure,’’ he said.
“He has a lot better turn of foot than what he had over there, maybe that might come after he has a few runs. But the way he’s been working and the way he looks he seems to have come right on.
“There’s nothing worse when you’re expecting something and get nothing. It’s a good surprise when you’re not expecting much and you get a bit.”
Ranges posted a first-up win for the first time in his career when he resumed with a gutsy performance at Kembla Grange two weeks ago and Snowden took that as a real encouragement for the preparation.
The gelding hit the lead early in the straight but was able to hold off his rivals and after Reece Jones’s claim he’ll drop in weight for the Smithfield RSL Handicap (1200m).
Snowden said while Ranges, $7.50 with TAB, is something of a quiet achiever he hasn’t previously shown as much ‘ticker’.
“I thought he’d had too tough a run and he had improvement in him, he certainly wasn’t screwed down for that race,’’ he said.
“I half expected him to put his hand up and say ‘I’ll see you back at the lounge at home’. But he did the opposite, he kept putting his head out.
“It was a very brave and gutsy win, I was really taken by it.
“He’s pulled up really well. There’s not a lot of options for the next few weeks so because he’s done so well we will have another crack.”
Meanwhile, Everest runner Wild Ruler is back in the stable to prepare for the autumn and the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) on Day 1 of The Star Championships is Snowden’s goal.