Will Hubert isn’t shying away from a clash with a couple of Group 1 winners on Saturday with his consistent galloper Hail Manhattan.
Trainer Will Hulbert is set to take on the big guns when he heads to Doomben on Saturday with handy galloper Hail Manhattan.
The five-year-old has won seven races during his career including one at Listed level but will face the likes of Group 1 winners Private Eye and Kukeracha in Saturday’s test.
Despite taking on both an Epsom Handicap and Queensland Derby winner, Hulbert is confident his gelding has the conditions to suit and he “can’t have him any better”.
“He’s been carrying topweight in his last two Listed races and now he’s on the minimum but it’s a hell a lot stronger than what he’s been racing against,” Hulbert, who trains in partnership with his father Peter, said.
“The 54kg and barrier six is pretty handy but Private Eye, what a horse he is with top class form.
“He (Private Eye) is drawn tricky though so hopefully he gets stuck behind a couple and with our light weight and good barrier, we will roll forward and look to give it a shake.”
Despite the conditions of the race meaning apprentices cannot claim, Hulbert is keen to stick with Adin Thompson.
Both Hulbert and Hail Manhattan delivered Thompson with his maiden black type win when taking out last year’s Tattersall’s Members Cup at the Sunshine Coast.
“(Adin Thompson) has already won a Listed race om him 15 months ago then Wiggo (Ryan Wiggins) has been riding him a fair bit but 54 kilos rules him out,” Hulbert said.
“He’s goes well with the horse so there’s no reason not to stick with Adin.”
Bookmakers rate Hail Manhattan as an $18 chance in early betting. Private Eye sits atop the market at $5.50 ahead of Kukeracha and Yonkers – both $7.50 chances.
Should the son of Manhattan Rain race well on Saturday, an appearance against more top line horses is likely in the Hollindale Stakes – won by Zaaki in 2021.
“We’ve always had this race on the radar and then we’ll go to the Hollindale in a fortnight,” Hulbert said.
“That will probably be stronger again but it will give us an idea of where we are at with him.
“Whether we push on for more races in the carnival or tip him out and get him ready for the Toowoomba Cup in September.
“I think he will go good, we can’t have him any better but he’s going to have to be at the top of his game to give this a shake.”
Originally published as Hail Manhattan to take on Group 1 winners Private Eye and Kukeracha in Tails Stakes