English trainer Ed Dunlop is eager to run Red Verdon (USA) in the Group 1 Stella Artois Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield on October 20th but is not yet guaranteed a start in the $5 million race.
Red Verdon, who will race in the same colours as former warrior Red Cadeaux, is currently 20th in the order of entry for the Caulfield Cup and while attrition of several horses above is likely in the next 10 days, travelling foreman Robin Trevor-Jones acknowledges it still won't be easy to make the final 18.
"Let's hope we get a start at Caulfield, we are just out of the race at the moment," he said.
"If he wasn't to get in we would probably, and that is probably, go to Geelong but there is the option of going to Moonee Valley as well, that is just a little later.
"As you know our English horses aren't as good as backing up as the Aussies, whether the trainer (Dunlop) would think Geelong and Melbourne Cup is a better option or to Moonee Valley is a better option I still need to work that out with him."
Red Verdon arrived in Melbourne on September 30 and was given his first serious hit-out at Werribee on Wednesday morning.
"I was quite happy with it, he worked with a horse of Andrew Balding's called Duretto, they've done progressive work and both finished very, very well, anyone that was watching would know that it is good work," he said.
"We have been here just over a week now and it was time to stretch his legs a little bit, he has done some serious cantering, we asked him to go a little quicker and he has responded very, very well.
"He loves it here, he is thriving, that can be a little problem with this horse because he can get rather gross on you so we need to keep our eye on that, he is eating well, he is doing very well, he is liking it here."
Japanese gallopers Chestnut Coat (JPN) and Sole Impact (JPN) also galloped on the course proper at Werribee on Wednesday morning.
Chestnut Coat is guaranteed a run in the Caulfield Cup and will definitely head in that direction while Sole Impact is currently 29th in the order of entry and is likely to head to the Geelong Cup in a bid to qualify for the Melbourne Cup.
The ultimate goal, the 2018 Melbourne Cup, picture VRC