Turn Me Loose prepared for his forthcoming trip to Australia by edging out Xtravagant to win a barrier trial at Cambridge on Tuesday.
Turn Me Loose edged out Xtravagant in a barrier trial at Cambridge on Tuesday. Photo: Trish Dunell
The Murray Baker and Andrew Forsman-trained Group I winner won his open 935m heat in the hands of Matt Cameron from the dual Group I winner Xtravagant and the Group III Gold Trail Stakes winner Honey Rider, a stablemate of the winner, finished third.
Forsman told NZ Racing Desk there was still plenty of improvement to come from Turn Me Loose.
“He’s still a bit fat and he will take a lot of improvement from that,” Forsman said. “He’ll be going straight over to Australia.”
Turn Me Loose’s first-up run is likely to be in the Group II Australia Stakes over 1200m at Moonee Valley on January 27.
The plan for the Iffraaj entire then takes in the Group I C F Orr Stakes at Caulfield a fortnight later with the Group I Futurity Stakes to follow at the same track on February 25.
Xtravagant was ridden by Opie Bosson for trainers Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards and was blinkered in the trial.
“We’re really happy with him and the trial will bring him on for the Telegraph (January 28),” Te Akau racing manager Brad Taylor said.
“We know there is a bit more improvement in him and Opie said he had a good blow afterwards.”