Simon Miller can write himself into Belmont Newmarket history if stable mates Oliver’s Travels or Caipirinha win the $100,000 Listed race at Belmont on Saturday.
Miller is out to become the first trainer to claim a hat trick of Belmont Newmarket’s after earlier wins to First Among Equals (2016) and Meteoroid (2017).
Miller is an unabashed fan of Oliver’s Travels and remains hopeful his return to racing can be the ideal springboard and guide to upcoming feature races.
Oliver’s Travels showcased his potential last campaign when he won three races and ran second to Red Ora in the Listed Bunbury Stakes (1400m) in February.
Oliver’s Travels, a Saxon gelding, warmed up for the Belmont Newmarket in good style when a close second to Profit Street in a 1000m trial two weeks ago.
In a field of 10 starters Oliver’s Travels has drawn the second widest gate and will be in the hands of leading jockey, William Pike for the first time.
“He is airborne,” Miller told Tabradio.
“He has raised the bar again since a break.
“If there is genuine tempo he will unleash his brilliant sprint.
“Where he ends up over the summer carnival remains to be seen.
“His main mission is the Hannans in the short term.
“The ideal scenario would be the Railway at the carnival.
“He still has to make a leap again, but you never know.”
Oliver’s Travels ($3.60) and the Chris Gangemi-trained Super Maxi ($3.70) are fighting for TAB favouritism.
Caipirinha, to jump from barrier seven for Joe Azzopardi, is rated an $11 chance.
Miller says the Nicconi mare will improve on her first-up sixth to Yeah Dardy in the New Season Sprint (1000m) on August 8.
“Caipirinha’s two trials leading to her first-up run were outstanding,” Miller said.
“On the heavy track the other day she didn’t handle it.
“Put a line through that and expect her to turn it around.”
Miller is also excited about unveiling Flirtini in the first race of the meeting.
It’s no easy task against a line up that includes Gimcrack Stakes (1100m) winner Agent Pippa and Fire And Rain, but she rates highly after two impressive trial wins.
“She is very good and will play over the carnival,” Miller said.
“She has a magnificent brain and can relax and quicken.
“Obviously we are taking on two good horses who have been there and done it, but if we win she is headed for bigger and better things.”