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Flemington preference for Land Of Plenty

Grahame Begg is set to have his first Group One runner since his return to training but is unsure whether that will be at Flemington or Randwick.

Begg’s preference is to run Land Of Plenty in Saturday’s Australian Guineas at Flemington but because he is 28th in the latest ballot, the trainer will also accept for the Randwick Guineas on the same day in Sydney.

Begg is no stranger to Group One success at both Flemington and Randwick, but Land Of Plenty will be chasing the trainer’s first elite level win since Secret Admirer’s 2011 Epsom Handicap.

Begg trained successfully out of Randwick for 25 years before shutting his Sydney stable in late 2014 and taking a break.

He relocated to Victoria in the middle of last year to begin again from the Pinecliff facility on the Mornington Peninsula.

He said it was exciting to be preparing for his first Group One runner in his first year back and is thrilled with how Land Of Plenty is going.

“We’ve put him in both races and we’re going to run where we get a start,” Begg said.

“We’re no guarantee of getting a run here at Flemington. We’re not 100 per cent sure where he sits in the ballot.

“I’m very happy with the horse but I’m probably going to have to accept in both races unfortunately.

“Of course it’s my preference to run at Flemington. You’re here, rather than having to take him up the road to Sydney. And you’re obviously going to get a soft track in Sydney.”

A Bill Stutt Stakes placegetter last spring when in the care of Mick Price, Land Of Plenty has had two starts for Begg and is high up in the Australian Guineas market.

The colt was a fast-finishing third in the Inglis Dash before covering ground and finishing third in the C S Hayes Stakes at Flemington last start.

“I’ve been delighted with his two runs,” Begg said.

“They’ve been very, very good and we feel he’s on the way up.

“He’s come on in each run and we’re happy with where we’re at at the moment. He’s in a good space.”

Begg has had six winners in Victoria since the start of the season and says he is enjoying his return to training.

“I’ve just got to get the runs on the board now,” he said.

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