By Brad Gray
Heliosphere could yet prove himself an autumn carnival contender if he keeps progressing the way trainer Gerald Ryan expects him to.
The G1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) and G1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) are certainly on the radar for the three-year-old colt as is the G1 ATC Australian Derby (2400m) on Day One of The Championships.
“Whether he’d run a Derby journey or not I don’t know but his great grandmother, Limitless, won a Brisbane Cup when it was over two miles. That’s always been in my mind,” Ryan said.
Heliosphere made a big impression first up over 1200m, running quick closing splits to run third behind subsequent Listed winner Pretty Fast.
“He is in a good head space at the moment. He has always been a handy worker but he is really focused,” the Rosehill-based trainer said.
“He was a colt that could have went the wrong way but he has come back the right way and he has settled in himself. He does everything right now. Last prep he was on the verge of going the wrong way.
“He has matured in the head and became really quiet around the stable.”
Heliosphere, owned by China Horse Club, will run again over a mile after Saturday’s 1400m assignment which will ultimately decide the direction Ryan takes with the son of Sebring.
Heliosphere's first up third
Pipeline and Fournette also line up for Ryan on their home patch on Saturday. Pipeline was scratched from Warwick Farm on Wednesday due to the wet track and while Ryan has some reservations about Fournette being ready to step up to Saturday grade she earns her shot on the back of a strong Goulburn win.
Meanwhile, stable star Menari is set to return to Ryan’s yard in the next couple of days having undergone a throat operation.
“He comes back in at the end of the week and its all positive. He looks really, really well,” Ryan said of the hulking colt.
Heliosphere is $2.70 favourite for Saturday's race with TAB Fixed Odds.