Chocante audutions for Melbourne campaign

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September 27, 2017 - 03:48 PM

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New Zealand stayer Chocante's prospects of adding Melbourne to his Australian itinerary hinges on how the stayer performs in The Metropolitan at Randwick.

The five-year-old gelding already has a Brisbane Cup on his record while his Sydney debut culminated in a creditable third behind Winx in the Chelmsford Stakes.

Chocante's form dipped in the Kingston Town Stakes though trainer Stephen Marsh was forgiving after he faded towards the end of 2000m.

"Randwick is obviously a big 2000 (metres), he was always going to be a bit vulnerable and he showed he needed the run," he said.

"We always knew he was going to take these two before he was getting close to peak for the Metrop. We think we've got him exactly where he want him."

Marsh is confident Chocante could handle the 2400m trip, otherwise a trip south would be shelved.

Chocante is among the nominations for the Melbourne Cup and the Caulfield Cup was also under consideration.

"We're at the crossroads now on exactly where we head. If we think he's not quite ready for Melbourne we might stick round for a St Leger in Sydney (on Everest Day)."

Chocante is a $12 chance with the TAB, well adrift of $4.80 favourite Libran.

Marsh has Corey Brown on board for the first time and was pleased with the barrier draw.

After drawing barrier one and with 54.5kg, Marsh said only rain was required would top off Chocante's preparations.

"We can't fault him, he's bounced out of the (Kingston Town) good. To make everything perfect we'd just need a shower of rain," he said.