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Payne turning his attention to stayers

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Trainer David Payne is please with Tarka and Commentator who run over 1550 metres at Canterbury.

Trainer David Payne is pleased to see a race for two-year-olds at Canterbury over longer than usual so he can test Commentator and Tarka with a view to their futures.

Payne likes training stayers and believes they should start young with his two to run over 1550 metres in Wednesday’s maiden.

The Payne-trained Ace High raced over 1600m twice as a two-year-old and went on to win last year’s Spring Champion Stakes (200m) and Victoria Derby (2500m).

The trainer doesn’t have such lofty ambitions for Tarka and Commentator but wants to see them stretch out.

Tarka has had one start for a close third over 1400m at Warwick Farm on May 16 while Commentator is making his debut.

“They are bred to stay so they have been given a good education and they are starting late in the season,” Payne said,

“We’ll just see how far we can go with them. They are are both very nice types.”

Tarka comes from the family of South African champion Igugu and the Payne-trained Honorius, third in the 2012 Spring Champion won by Dundeel and third in the Queensland Derby behind Hawkspur.

Commentator is the outsider in the field while Tarka is among the leading chances.

While he is not sure how far the two can go, Payne is sure stablemate Toulouse has the qualities to be a Group One contender.

Toulouse runs in Saturday’s 2YO Handicap (1400m) at Rosehill trying to back up his last-start win over the distance at the same track on June 16.

Conditions that day were soft and he can expect the same again with rain predicted in Sydney this week.

“He will run on Saturday and then have a short break, only a couple of weeks, and then we will look at the spring,” Payne said.

“He has to make the step up and I think he can so we will look at the Spring Champion and the Derby.”

Ace High is back at Payne’s Rosehill stable with the trainer hoping he can get to the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups.

The colt had a short spell in the paddock after his nose second to Levendi in the Australian Derby on April 7.

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