Age Of Chivalry will step up from midweek company to Group Three level at Flemington.
After successive midweek Sandown victories, the time has come for Age Of Chivalry to be tested against some of Victoria’s best three-year-olds.
Simon Zahra, who trains in partnership with his cousin Mathew Ellerton, said Saturday’s Group Three C S Hayes Stakes at Flemington was the opportunity to find out where of Age Of Chivalry sits.
His opposition includes Victoria Derby winner Extra Brut, Sandown Guineas winner Ringerdingding and Carbine Club Stakes winner Rainier.
While Saturday’s race may be a little stronger than Zahra was expecting, he is confident Age Of Chivalry can acquit himself well.
“He’s a horse on the rise,” Zahra said.
“The 1400 metres is what he wants and the ten-day back-up suits.
“It was nearly a month in between runs when he won at Sandown last time and he just overdid it a bit.
“I think he’s got the ability, it’s just whether he’s ready for something like this against more seasoned horses.”
Zahra said Act Of Chivalry was his own worst enemy.
Bought at Ready To Run sale in New Zealand, Act Of Chivalry was taught to jump and run, a trait the stable would like to see him reverse.
“He’s probably a bit better ridden a bit quieter and allowed to finish off,” Zahra said.
“I think he’ll be a good miler that will step up to 2000 metres, but he’s got to learn to chill.
“He’s still a touch aggressive at the moment but he’s only had the four starts and he’s two from two this preparation.”
If Act Of Chivalry performs well, Zahra said the team would like to push towards the Group Two Alister Clark Stakes at Moonee Valley on March 15.
Zahra and Ellerton will accept the challenge to start in-form Rock ‘N’ Gold from the widest gate in the Japan Racing Association Trophy.
“We saved him for this,” Zahra said.
“He loves Flemington and we can’t fault him, but he’s going to need a bit more luck from that gate.”