Quality New Zealand jumper Chief Sequoyah has arrived across the Tasman in preparation for a three-race campaign.
The son of Redwood has been in good form in his homeland, finishing runner-up in the KS Browne Hurdle (3100m) behind The Cossack before a fourth-placed result in the Waikato Hurdle (3200m).
His trainer and part-owner John Wheeler was pleased with his efforts but believes he will be better suited to steeplechase races in Australia.
“I have kept him to hurdles but he will be a better horse over big fences,” Wheeler said.
“I was pretty happy with him (in his last two runs). He got out of his ground a little bit in the hurdle races but I don’t think that will matter so much in the chases.
“He went well – he ran second to The Cossack and picked up a lot of ground on him in the last half mile, so it was a good run.”
Wheeler said his charge didn’t travel particularly well to Melbourne but he has since settled in well ahead of this first hit-out next week.
“He went over last Wednesday. He didn’t travel that well but we gave him a couple of days to get over it,” Wheeler said.
“He will have a trial on the 13th of July and race on the 17th - The Moss Trooper (3500m).
“His second race will be the Crisp Steeplechase (4200m), and the final one is the Grand National Steeplechase (4500m).
“That is what I have aimed him at all season, so hopefully it works for him. He is pretty well.”
Meanwhile, Wheeler is looking forward to the return of last year’s Gr.3 New Zealand Cup (3200m) runner-up Beaudz Well.
“Beaudz Well is due for his first gallop back tomorrow morning,” Wheeler said.
“He has been doing some light work for a while, I gave him a bit of a break.
“He will be back racing in probably mid-August. I am looking long-term at the New Zealand Cup.”