Alligator settles in for snappy southern raid
ALLIGATOR Blood proved himself a seasoned traveller, arriving in Melbourne without incident on Wednesday morning before one of the most enticing clashes of the autumn next Saturday.
Trainer David Vandyke flew with Alligator Blood and said it was remarkable how much more mature he is now compared to his first trip away at the beginning of last spring.
"He was just taking it in his stride and that was good to see," he said. "He's arrived here at Flemington and he's in a good head space.
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"Whenever we travel a horse from a different climate over a long distance, there's always a degree of risk, so we will be monitoring him closely over the next few days and hopefully we see him eating up and doing well."
ALL-STAR MILE: VOTE FOR YOUR FAVOURITE HORSE
Alligator Blood meets his Caulfield Guineas conqueror Super Seth and boom Kiwi Catalyst in next Saturday's C.S. Hayes Stakes before a probable rematch in the Australian Guineas, and then a possible All-Star Mile start, setting up a tantalising sequence of races for the trio.
"We see so many of these better horses, especially three-year-olds that are sold overseas or go to stud and in modern times, we don't see the great clashes we did in yesteryear," Vandyke said.
"To have the three-year-old star of New Zealand Catalyst, Super Seth and Alligator Blood all meeting at Flemington next week, it's just an exciting event.
"If we don't win, well, I just hope the better horse beats us. I'm really excited that we're competing against these horses."
Alligator Blood is the early frontrunner in All-Star Mile voting, underlining how popular he's become in such a short time.
"He mightn't be the fastest horse in Australia, but he's certainly very popular and it's full credit to his record and his profile," his trainer said.