By Ray Hickson
Racing world, meet Mick The Hat.
The curiously named two-year-old – surely a cult galloper in waiting - is slated to make his debut at Newcastle on Saturday.
While his trainer Brett Cavanough can’t shed a lot of light on the naming of the gelding, who is by Snippetson out of Shook Up, he can speak for the ability he’s shown at home.
“There’s some Irishmen involved in him, there might be a bloke who drinks at Churchill’s. I’m not sure,’’ Cavanough said.
Mick The Hat storms down the outside to win his Scone trial on June 13
“You’d want to meet them, they are a lively bunch. The horse is educated and had a couple of preps, he’s got to go racing and start repaying his owners.’’
Mick The Hat is one of a number of first starters in the Nelson Bay Bowlo Plate (900m) and he signalled some ability easily winning a 900m trial on his home track at Scone on June 13.
Cavanough said he’s always thought the gelding was pretty sharp but the trial win took him a little by surprise and has a word of warning about taking it on face value.
“He’s just a baby learning, he’s always been quite a tidy horse at trackwork but he just went there and took it to another level,’’ he said.
“The inner track was off that day so I took it in my own hands to bring him down the outside that day. So it might look better than it is.’’
Meanwhile, Cavanough said classy sprinter The Monstar is likely to head to Grafton next month in an attempt to go one better than last year in the Ramornie Handicap.
The seven-year-old led until the shadows before being denied by Calanda and, according to Cavanough, he’s freshened up nicely since failing in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap.
“It was just beyond him. He didn’t have enough pace to lead and he got cluttered up on the corner and historically when he’s cluttered up on the corner it isn’t his day,’’ he said.
“I've freshened him up and he's spent some time on the water walker.’’
The Listed $160,000 Ramornie Handicap (1200m) is run on Wednesday July 11.