By Ray Hickson
Trainer Richard Litt is used to most of his horses being underestimated in the market but can see plenty of reasons why Wander can keep his unbeaten second-up record intact at Warwick Farm on Wednesday.
The former Godolphin galloper is in his second preparation for Litt and comes off a first-up second behind the in-form Black Magnum, a run the trainer said he has benefited greatly from.
Wander is a $10 chance with TAB in the Australian Turf Club Handicap (1200m).
“He's a progressive type of horse, he needed the run the other day desperately and he ran a great race,’’ Litt said.
“He tried hard, he’s had three weeks between runs and he's bounced back great.
“He has a good barrier, Nash Rawiller, he's got a lot of things in his favour.
“He's a very genuine horse so you can go to the races and be confident he will run well.’’
The four-year-old took advantage of an inside barrier and pounced late when winning at his second run for Litt at Canterbury in December and that’s the blueprint for Wednesday’s race.
“That's how we'll be looking to ride him again, take a bit of a sit and have a good crack at them late,’’ he said.
“He was probably unlucky not to win another one but his one win was good.’’
While he’d love another heavy track he said Wander worked strongly on Friday and is ready to go.
Stablemate Lancaster Bomber has put three placings together this time in and Litt said if he handles the class rise, something he’s confident he will do in time, he’s not out of the Star Turn @ Vinery Handicap (1400m).
The three-year-old ($8.50) was placed behind the promising Herzegovina at his last start over 1200m at Gosford, clocking the fastest last 600m of 35.38 in the race (Punter's Intelligence.
Litt said he also has some things in his favour - not the least Glen Boss having his first ride for the chuffed trainer.
“He hasn't had a good barrier for the last couple. His last run proved to me that he can run 1400m and he's best ridden off the pace,’’ he said.
“Obviously he's stepping up in grade but it's not an overly strong race. He has the ability to be a Saturday class horse.
“I've never used Nash or Glen Boss before, it's amazing in Sydney you have exposure to some of the best riders in the world.’’
Wander runs second to Black Magnum at Warwick Farm on July 10
Meanwhile, stable star Castelvecchio is ramping up ahead of the spring and there’s a chance he could tackle the Group 1 $1m Golden Rose (1400m) first-up from a spell.
The Champagne Stakes winner is set to trial later in August and Litt has left enough time for him to have a couple of trials and contest the Run To The Rose (1200m) as a lead up if necessary.
“I've held him back a week so he's had plenty of grounding,’’ Litt said.
“I have my mind set on going a couple of trials and straight into the Golden Rose. I think he is the right sort of horse to do that but if we think he might be a run short then two weeks before there's a beautiful race to put him in.’’
Castelvecchio is $11 second favourite in TAB's Golden Rose market.