It’s been a hard battle for Alaskan God since his outstanding three-year-old season, but trainer Dan Morton maintains ultimate faith in his gelding.
It’s been 581 days and 10 starts since Alaskan God’s WA Derby (2400m) triumph, but Morton is still enthusiastic about the six-year-old and his future.
Alaskan God is back in Perth and along with Startrade will give Morton a dual pronged attack in the Group 2 Whiteclaw Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) on Saturday.
The $300,000 Ascot race is the launch pad for Alaskan God who holds Group 1 entries in the Railway Stakes (1600m) and Northerly Stakes (1800m).
Alaskan God returns to home base and contests the Lee Steere Stakes after an interstate trip to Melbourne didn’t quite live up to expectations, but he wasn’t disgraced.
The half a million dollar stakes earner had three cracks at Melbourne features with his best finish a three length third in the G3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m).
“I haven’t lost faith in the horse at all,” Morton said to The Races WA.
“We took him to Melbourne, it didn’t work, so be it.
“We pulled the pin before we ran him right out.
“1400m of the Lee Steere might be on the short side for him, but it gives him a launch pad into nice races.”
Alaskan God set the track alight as a three-year-old, winning five consecutive races that culminated in two features: The WA Derby and Melvista Stakes (2200m).
Morton said Alaskan God has carried a heavy burden since his three-year-old heroics.
“Most definitely he has, most definitely,” Morton said.
“Everybody including us are always looking for the next big thing.
“At that point he was looming like it, but he still has nice races in him.
“He’s a beautiful horse and I’ve lost no faith in him.”
Alaskan God has drawn barrier 12 and will be ridden for the first time by, Jarrad Noske.
He’s been a drifter with Tabtouch, currently at $18 from his opening quote of $11.
Last week’s brilliant Asian Beau Stakes (1400m) winner Marocchino heads the market at $4.20.
Startrade is $26 and Morton thinks that’s a silly price.
“In my view he is above the odds,” Morton said.
“He’s a nice horse, an older horse now and taking a little bit longer to get to his peak.
“He’s nearing peak fitness and is well above the odds.”
Startrade, who will wear blinkers, exits from barrier five. Paul Harvey takes the ride.
Another Chino contests the Listed Luckygray Stakes (1800m) and according to Morton is unlucky not to be aiming for consecutive features.
The four-year-old comes out of a luckless run in the Northam Cup (1600m) when fifth and 2.6 lengths from Let’s Galahvant.
“The way the race was run, racking and stacking, gave him no chance,” Morton said.
“With an even run Brad (Parnham) said he goes close.
“I’d like to think he’s a winnable proposition, but we are heading to the Perth Cup (2400m) and I want that to be his ticket.
“Everything we are doing with that horse is building to January 1.”
Another Chino is into $7.00. Casino Seventeen from the red-hot Grant and Alana Williams stable heads the market at $2.40.
Brad Parnham keeps the ride on Another Chino. The Maschino gelding jumps from barrier 11.