By Jack Marshall
Newcastle trainer Jay Hopkins is three weeks on from his biggest success as a trainer and will be out to chase more glory when his stable star Got Unders lines up at Royal Randwick on Saturday over 1400m.
Got Unders has been a remarkable horse for Hopkins and his family, who own the horse, providing the trainer with his first winner and his first win at Group level.
The eight-year-old gelding caused an upset victory in the Group 3 Cameron Handicap last start over the Newcastle Carnival saluting at odds of $26.
The horse, currently rated a $14 chance on TAB fixed odds (in from $17) will have to carry 59.5kg on Saturday - a 5.5kg rise from the weight he carried for his Group 3 victory.
“The weight is a concern, especially in this grade where it is just below Group racing,” Hopkins said.
“He has pulled up really well from his last run it’s just been hard finding the right type of race for him.”
The eight-year-old gelding drops back to 1400m after the 1500m of the Cameron and Hopkins is confident it will benefit the horse.
“Back down to the 1400m is not a concern as his preferred distance is around the 1400m to 1500m mark, so this will suit him,” he said.
Hopkins has booked the services of Blake Shinn to ride the son of Southern Image and expects to be in a prominent position in the run from barrier four: “From that barrier he will be in the first few for sure,” he said.
A trip to Melbourne hasn’t been ruled out for the consistent galloper as Hopkins looks to continue breaking new ground in the early stages of his training career.
“If he performs well on Saturday, hopefully runs top three, we might be able to find a race down in Melbourne for him late in the carnival, there is a race on Sandown Cup day that I think would suit him well,” Hopkins said.