Host colts marching to classics

Mick Kent is marshalling his troops for the autumn carnival and Philippi will be among the stable’s advance guard this Saturday.

Philippi will put an unbeaten record on the line in the G2 Autumn Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.  He is a son of Swettenham Stud sire Host (Chi) and warmed up for a return to racing after an 18 week spell with an impressive hit-out in a Werribee trial on Monday.

“Philippi is just where I want him,” Kent said.  “It was a real good trial yesterday.”

Philippi (3c Host – Soorena by Encosta De Lago) won at Mornington and Moonee Valley earlier this season prior to a Listed victory in the UCI Stakes (1800m) at Flemington in October.  “I think he’s a 2000 metre horse so I’m looking at the Randwick and Rosehill Guineas,” Kent said.  “But his immediate goal is the Australian Guineas.”

Philippi is raced by Black Caviar’s breeder Rick Jamieson and the wonder mare looked in tip-top shape when trialling between races at Caulfield last Saturday.

The exhibition gallop was scheduled shortly after her stablemate Royal Haunt scored an upset victory in the LR Manfred Stakes.  The beaten brigade included Hosting who, at first glance, appeared a well-held third.  But it was a better run than it looked on paper according to jockey Craig Williams after being under pressure before the turn.

Hosting (3c Host – Kali Smytzer by Zabeel) also holds an entry for the G1 Australian Guineas at Flemington on March 2.  He is trained by Greg Eurell for owners John Hampton, Patsy Harrison, Graham & Marjorie Olive, Nick & Michael Tozer, Kevin Williams and Graeme Yeomans.

His older half-brother Elderly Paradise (Danewin) won the LR Macau Derby and LR Macau Gold Cup before travelling to Dubai where he added the Bab Al Shams Trophy at Meydan on January 24.

Hosting is held in very high regard by Eurell, so much so, the Cranbourne trainer nominated him for this year’s G1 Doncaster Hcp solely on the strength of a very impressive debut win at Mornington in October.

– Karl Patterson

Host colt nominated for G1 Australian Guineas