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Sydney preference for Theanswermyfriend

In-form three-year-old Theanswermyfriend has been installed odds-on favourite for the Listed Bendigo Guineas but trainer Robert Smerdon’s preference is to run him in Sydney on the same day.

Theanswermyfriend is a dual acceptor for Saturday’s Bendigo Guineas (1400m) for which he is at $1.85 while he is the $4 favourite for the Group Three Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Randwick.

Smerdon said the horse was scheduled to travel from Melbourne on Thursday night.

“We’re looking to Sydney,” Smerdon said.

“We’ve just kept the options open.

“He’ll more than likely go to the paddock after this run so I just think it’s an opportunity to give him a run the other way and a trip away from home, even if it’s a bit soft.

“He was OK in a trial on soft ground one day but it wasn’t heavy. We’ll find out a few things and roll the dice, I think.

“Until he’s well and truly gone we won’t scratch him from the other.”

Theanswermyfriend has won two of his past three starts in dominant fashion with a close second in between.

The Bendigo Guineas, one of two Listed races on Saturday’s program along with the Golden Mile, has attracted a field of 13 with Godolphin’s Achi Baba on the second line of betting at $8 but his chances would obviously increase should Theanswermyfriend be scratched.

Achi Baba made his debut in Melbourne in February last year when he finished third in a midweek Sandown race won by Revolving Door from Seaburge.

His next eight starts have all been in NSW, including a maiden win at Newcastle in November and a benchmark win at Rosehill the following month.

He returns to Victorian racing after a last-start sixth in the Group Two Phar Lap Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill.

“He was very good in the Phar Lap Stakes,” trainer John O’Shea said.

“He drops back in grade, and hopefully he can roll to the front and have his own way in front.

“The 1400 metres is his pet trip and he’s settled in well in Melbourne.”

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