Lee Freedman has been thrilled with the form and results posted by Cool Chap this time, and is confident the horse is ready to lay a great account for himself in Saturday’s Group 1 South Australian Derby (2400m) at Morphettville.
Cool Chap began his short racing career under the guidance of recently-retired trainer Peter Moody, but has undoubtedly kicked up a gear since transferring to the care of Freedman and brother Anthony in early March; claiming two wins and a close second through three starts.
Freedman believes the three-year-old will be a far-better racing prospect in seasons to come, but told Racing Ahead he is confident his most-recent effort for success in the Listed VRC St Leger (2800m) on April 25th suggests he’ll be right in the mix in Saturday’s 2016 South Australian Derby.
“We stick to a set formula with him,” Freedman said.
“He went straight down to Pinecliff for about a week after the St Leger, he loves it down there. And he came back, and he was very bright and happy.
“His work leading up to the Derby has been as good as it was before the St Leger.
“He’s such a good little staying horse and so honest – you’ve got to give him his crack at it.”
Freedman revealed he would like to give Cool Chap a lengthy spell following his run in the SA Derby, with a view towards Gold Coast’s Magic Millions meet in early January 2017.
“He’s still a very-lightly raced horse, and still quite an immature horse,” the Hall of Fame trainer added.
“He’s also a Magic Millions horse.
“I’ll discuss with the owners, but my way of thinking would be after the Derby to give him a good spell, start his campaign in the spring a bit later and pitch him towards the million-dollar race at the Gold Coast.
“Being a High Chaparral, he’ll – to me – be a better horse as a five-year-old.”
Cool Chap debuted to racing for fifth in a Warrnambool minor over 1200m in May last year before being immediately returned to the paddock with a view towards his 2016 campaign.
Resuming this year for first-up success in the Morning Car & Tyre Service Maiden on January 29th, the High Chaparral gelding ran third in the Polytrack BM64 (1400m) and second in the Browns Sawdust & Shavings BM70 (1600m) in his final starts for Moody.
Taking out the Noel Rundle Handicap (2000m) on March 26th, Cool Chap ran a close second behind Charlevoix in the Listed Galilee Series Final (2400m) a fortnight later, in what was his only other start prior to the St Leger.
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