By Ray Hickson
Spring is firmly in the sights of trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott when it comes to emerging stayer Wolfe.
The Japanese bred four-year-old, a winner of three of his four starts, is potentially a Group 1 stayer in the making according to Bott so all eyes are on his performance at Randwick on Saturday.
A race like the Group 1 Metropolitan (2400m) in October, which Waterhouse has won six times, could be a spring aim if Wolfe continues his dash through the grades.
"He's a lovely stayer in the making, we certainly haven't seen the best of him yet,'' Bott said.
"We do have the spring in mind, where we can ideally place him in the spring will dictate what we do after Saturday.
"We don't want to tax him too much this time in but eventually he will get to that sort of class.''
Wolfe has had an interesting journey to the Waterhouse/Bott yard.
He was selected by Waterhouse from a sale in Japan and was educated there before being sent to France as a two-year-old.
When he eventually arrived in Sydney he was still a colt, he was quickly gelded and is now rewarding the patience of his owners.
“We've still got to test him and get his miles in his legs,’’ Bott said.
“He looks to have a bit of class about him. We won't get too far ahead of ourselves but we think he has a bright future.’’
As it stands Wolfe is a 75 rated horse so he has a few steps up the ladder to climb yet, and the Sporting Chance Cancer Foundation Handicap (2000m) is his first Saturday task.
He relished the step up from his lone defeat at 1400m to score impressively over 1900m at midweek level at Canterbury earlier this month, where he sprinted sharply from off the speed running 11.30 for his last 200m (Punter's Intelligence).
“He looks to have done well since, he's thriving in his work and improving with racing,’’ Bott said.
“He was probably a bit unlucky first-up but he was vulnerable at that trip, stepping out to the staying distance we'll get to see what his real potential is.’’
Bott said he expects Wolfe , dominant $2.30 favourite with TAB, will have only one or two more runs, in Sydney or Brisbane, in this preparation before attention turns to the spring.
Wolfe wins easily at Canterbury on May 8
There’ll be plenty of attention on boom colt Reloaded at Randwick but Bott isn’t conceding the Supporterhub Handicap (1400m), believing Discharged has improved since their clash on Anzac Day.
Discharged, $4 second elect with TAB, was beaten one length by Reloaded over 1200m then went to Canterbury and beat subsequent winner Kordia on May 8.
“He's a real improver, it was an excellent debut behind the favourite,’’ he said.
“I thought there was so much merit in that run and he showed the benefit of that experience to win nicely at Canterbury.
“He's done well in his work and appears to be thriving. He's a tough horse and we expect him to be right in the mix.’’
Comments from Adrian Bott on the stable’s other Randwick runners:
Frenzied (Race 3, $8): There was a lot to like about his performance at Kembla last start, nothing went right for him in the run but he was a class above them. He's been very raw all the way through and he's starting to put it together now. He's up in class but he runs out a strong 2000m and will stay even further. He's on the up and has to be considered in that race.
Ready To Prophet (Race 6, $6): She looks well placed, we were running out of excuses for her prior to Scone so it was great to see her fulfil what she's shown us. I think she can go right on with it now, we hope to see another performance like that on Saturday.