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Sydney Cup hurdle first-up no concern

Godolphin’s Sydney Cup raiders Polarisation and Penglai Pavilion are making promising strides towards their star turn at The Championships.

The transition from racing in Europe to an Australian autumn is going to plan in Sydney as the duo work through quarantine requirements at Canterbury Park.

Although it would be considered a tough task in Australia to ask Polarisation and Penglai Pavilion to tackle the $2 million Sydney Cup first-up after spells that started in September and October respectively, Charlie Appleby’s assistant trainer James Ferguson is unfazed.

“They are fairly fit as it is. Obviously we’ll build them up and do their final pieces but it’s not much different to what we do normally. We’ll just keep them ticking over, making sure they are happy and in good order,” Ferguson said, after the duo cantered on Monday.

“Polarisation hasn’t won since he has been with Charlie but take out his Northumberland Plate run (25 lengths last) and all of his form has all been very consistent.

“(Penglai Pavilion) started life with Andre Fabre in France and came fifth in the Arc so if Andre is running him in the Arc he obviously thinks he’s fairly good.”

Ferguson said the visitors had settled in nicely and normal training should begin this week.

And although the aim is for Penglai Pavilion and Polarisation to go straight into the Sydney Cup, Ferguson said a run in the Group Two Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) at Randwick on April 1 might be required.

“It’s on the cards considering they are very low in the weights,” he said.

“If you look back at their form, they both run well fresh so I’m not scared of running them first time up in the Sydney Cup.”

Neither, it seems, are the bookmakers with the pair on the third line of TAB fixed odds betting at $11 behind Antonio Giuseppe and Tavago at $6 and Kinema and Libran at $8.

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