Krug's latest Aussie campaign
By Michael Guerin
Krug will return to the scene of his greatest triumph as he prepares for his first New South Wales campaign.
The superstar three-year-old, yes he is still a three-year-old, bounced back from two poor standing start performances to start this campaign to win the Junior Free-For-All on Cup Day and then pace a sub 1:50 mile as adjusted by Addington’s electronic Ultimate Racebook when third to South Coast Arden in the New Zealand Free-For-All.
Those performances thrilled trainer Cran Dalgety and he is now looking forward with confidence to Krug’s four-year-old career which will be a mixture of age group racing and plenty more open class challenges.
The first of those major four-year-old races will be the A$250,000 Chariots of Fire at Menangle on February 19, which to get into Krug will need to race in one of the key lead-ups at Menangle.
Dalgety is reluctant though to head to Sydney having not raced since the Cup carnival so he is targeting the $50,000 Franklin Cup at Alexandra Park on December 31.
That used to be Auckland Cup night but with that moved to May 29 the Franklin Cup is the biggest open class pace in December and Dalgety says that should suit, especially as the established open class stars like Copy That, South Coast Arden and Self Assured won’t be there.
That also means returning to Alexandra Park where he recorded a quite remarkable win in the Northern Derby last March when he charged 15 lengths clear in front and driver Tony Herlihy elected to go with it, the end result being one of the more spectacular wins in recent New Zealand harness racing.
“The Franklin Cup is the race I have found for him and then he can get across to Sydney to get ready for the preludes of the Chariots Of Fire,” says Dalgety.
So that will mean no Victorian races like the Hunter Cup for Krug but if he was able to win the Chariots Of Fire then he would be invited into the Miracle Mile two weeks later and Dalgety admits, without getting too far ahead of himself, that A$1million stake would be very tempting.
“But that is a long way off so we will take it one race at the time and concentrate on Alexandra Park.”