Gai Waterhouse will decide whether her rising star Herculian Prince stays in Sydney or travels to Melbourne after the Colin Stephen Quality at Randwick this Saturday.
Waterhouse’s main goal with Herculian Prince is to qualify him for the Melbourne Cup. “The Colin Stephen will tell us whether he runs in The Metropolitan (October 2) or heads to Melbourne for the Caulfield Cup,” Waterhouse said. “He has an amazing cruising speed and will stay all day.”
Herculian Prince firmed into a $4.40 favourite with TAB Sportsbet for the Metropolitan after his dominant victory in the G3 Kingston Town Stakes at Rosehill on September 11. The former New Zealander buttered up in the Kingston Town after being placed in the G3 Tramway Handicap (1400m) seven days earlier.
Herculian Prince had won the Listed Neville Sellwood (1900m) and Listed JRA Plate (2000m) during the autumn carnival.
Taken to the front by Hugh Bowman in the Kingston Town, Herculian Prince had run his rivals ragged by the end of the 2000m contest. He was purchased last season by Robbie Waterhouse as a three-win galloper from the stable of Karyn McQuade in New Zealand.
“I so dearly want to win the Melbourne Cup,” Waterhouse said. “I haven’t had a runner for a few years and I told Rob I was sick of not having a good stayer in the stable.
“He then went out and found some very good, tried New Zealand stayers in Herculian Prince and Descarado. He’s a genius at finding these good stayers early in their careers and it’s a method we used with a lot of success in the past. We found stayers like Te Akau Nick, Hula Flight, Electronic and Coco Cobanna this way.”
Herculian Prince was bred by Amber Thoroughbreds and is a son of the ill-fated Sir Tristram sire Yamanin Vital.
The winner of NZ$293,967 in stakes is one of four named foals to race for the Woodman mare Sea Island, who was a winner herself at 1200m. This is the family of the G1 winners Racing to Win, Hula Chief and Love Dance.