The idea of taking Stafford’s Lad on an interstate trip looms as an appealing prospect for top Perth trainer, Dan Morton.
A South Australian campaign is on the cards for Stafford’s Lad with the G2 Adelaide Cup (3200m) viewed as an ideal target.
Morton wanted to race Stafford’s Lad in last year’s Adelaide Cup, but Covid border restrictions put a halt to his plans.
Renowned as a tough and durable stayer, Stafford’s Lad ran a creditable second to Buster Bash in last fortnight’s Perth Cup (2400m).
Following the Perth Cup, the 10th start of a campaign that commenced in August, it was anticipated eight-year-old Stafford’s Lad would enjoy a good spell in the paddock.
But Morton said the opportunity of testing Stafford’s Lad over two miles in the Adelaide Cup was too good an opportunity to pass up.
“He will go around in Perth on Saturday week to give his legs a run a round,” Morton told The Races WA.
“It will be a short and sharp campaign.
“He’ll then run in the Lord Reims Stakes (2600m) at Morphettville in February.
“That race is two weeks before the Adelaide Cup on March 13.
“He’s a ripper this bloke and I’m super keen to see him run over 3200m.
“I think he’s a genuine stayer and I wouldn’t be going over there to Adelaide for nothing.”
Stafford’s Lad has been a revelation since he entered Morton’s stable in 2021.
Initially bought by his large group of owners to race in Broome, he has exceeded all expectations.
The Demerit gelding won black-type races in the A.T.A. Stakes (2200m), Boulder Cup (2100m) and Kalgoorlie Cup (2200m) under Morton’s reign.
Previously trained by Ian Shield, Stafford’s Lad has a 73-race record for nine wins and 17 placings with prize money just over $600,000.
Morton said leading Perth jockey, Chris Parnham will be offered the ride on Stafford’s Lad in the Adelaide Cup.