Trainer Tony McEvoy has revealed that talented five-year-old Alpine Eagle could line up for Saturday’s 2016 Group 3 Naturalism Stakes (2000m) at Caulfield, after failing to fire in his second-up task last weekend.
Alpine Eagle jumped from the gates well in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) at Flemington, and while receiving a good run in transit, failing to make anything of his run in the final straight and finished a disappointing eleventh of thirteen.
McEvoy told AAP that he is at odds as to why the High Chaparral entire failed to perform last weekend, but believes the secret to a return to form may lie in a quick back-up into the Naturalism Stakes 2016.
“I’m going to back him up, either in the Naturalism or a race in Adelaide,” McEvoy said.
“He didn’t give me what I expected there on Saturday, for whatever reason.
“I thought a quick run might be good for him.
“It was disappointing. He got too colty. He’s feeling well but he’s not concentrating on the job at hand.”
Alpine Eagle stamped himself as a colt to follow via an impressive 2015 Autumn Carnival campaign that was highlighted by a win in the Group 2 Autumn Classic (1800m) and close second behind Wandjina in the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m).
Resuming last spring for second in the Listed Penny Edition Stakes (1400m), Alpine Eagle was forced to return to the paddock with injury after placing sixth in the Makybe Diva Stakes.
Having returned in autumn this year for only one start; a credible fifth in the Group 3 RN Irwin Stakes (1600m) at Morphettville on May 21st, the entire out of Zephyria ran sixth in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) first-up this time, in what was his only other start prior to the Makybe Diva Stakes.
The 2016 Naturalism Stakes field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
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