Harmysian chasing Cup dream

Victory in the R M Ansett Classic will get Harmysian over a ballot clause for the Melbourne Cup.

Trainer Clayton Douglas is working towards having his first Melbourne Cup runner with a race at Mornington an integral part of that plan. 

Harmysian heads to the Listed R M Ansett Classic (2400m) on Saturday with Douglas hoping a win will lead to the Group 2 Herbert Power Stakes (2400m) at Caulfield on October 8. 

Douglas sees victory in that race being the chance to receive a penalty for the Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on November 1 and move up the ballot order. 

Harmysian qualifies for a Melbourne Cup start if successful on Saturday but will remain well down the order of entry. 

"If he wins on Saturday, all going well, he'll go to the Herbert Power in two weeks and then we'll work it out after that where he lobs," Douglas said. 

"He needs to get his rating up and a penalty to get into the Melbourne Cup. He is unlikely to get that on Saturday, but he could get in the Herbert Power." 

Douglas said Harmysian's campaign this time in had gone smoothly. 

He was successful second-up at Sandown over 1 1⁄8 m in Benckmark 70 company before rising the 1 1⁄4 m at Moonee Valley last time, finishing a luckless fifth. 

"He's come back super this prep," Douglas said. 

"All three runs have been good, and he was probably a little bit unlucky the other day getting held-up around The Valley. 

"He hit the line solid, especially going to an open handicap over 2000 metres. 

"He got out to 1 1⁄2 m third-up last prep, so this prep we're going in fourth up. 

"It looks the right race being on his home track and when it came up, with nice spacing between runs, we thought it would be a good race to have shot at." 

Should Douglas' hopes of a Melbourne Cup start fall short, he said there was plenty of other options for Harmysian including the Geelong Cup, the Moonee Valley Cup and even the Sandown Cup at the end of the Melbourne Spring Carnival


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