WARRNAMBOOL trainer Jarrod McLean is hoping for an early birthday present when he saddles up four runners at Caulfield today.
McLean, who turns 33 tomorrow, has accepted with Mango Mojito, Youbolt, Muchos Respectos and Smarty Mac on the eight-race program.
The Brierly Steeplechase-winning trainer rates Mango Mojito, in an $80,000 handicap for mares over 1200 metres, as his best hope today.
“Mango Mojito is in good order. She’s been a very consistent mare,” he said.
“She’s drawn the widest barrier but I still think she’ll run very well. I had entered her at Morphettville but I scratched her from there to run at Caulfield.
“She’s got a great record over the 1200 metres. She’s a very honest mare who should run well. It’s her first start at Caulfield but I don’t think that will cause any problems.”
The speedy Youbolt runs in an $80,000 race over 1200 metres and his stablemate Muchos Respectos is the first emergency in the race.
“I was happy with Youbolt’s first-up run at Moonee Valley. We’ll probably go back on him today,” McLean said.
“I think he might need this run to be near his top.
“I hope Muchos Respectos gets a run. He’s jumping in class but had no luck last time.
“He’s had the two runs in from a break and has improved with each run.”
Smarty Mac has drawn the outside barrier in an $80,000 race over 2000m. But McLean said he might scratch the six-year-old and save him for the Woodford Cup on December 29.
“I’ll make up my mind on Saturday morning whether we run him,” he said.
“We might freshen him up for the Woodford Cup.
“If we run him today the instruction for jockey Chris Symons will be to drop him back from that barrier.
“I don’t think he had much luck last time when he ran at Moonee Valley.”
Warrnambool trainer Aaron Purcell has booked champion jockey Damian Oliver to ride last-start Ballarat winner Initiator in the same race as Smarty Mac.
Fellow Warrnambool trainer Matthew Williams saddles up LuckyI’mbarefoot against the pair.
The Wilde stable will be represented by Lord Wimble in a $100,000 race over 1600m.