Trainer John Sargent pair to lay spring markers

John Sargent is looking to two of his most promising horses to make spring carnival statements when Palmetto and Perfect Thought step out in separate races at Randwick.

After making a successful leap from benchmark company to win the $500,000 The Coast last preparation, Palmetto resumes in Saturday’s Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) where Sargent anticipates a bold return.

“He’s come back really well. I think he should hopefully go to another level this time,” Sargent said.

“He has matured every time he’s come in and from the five draw, he’s going to be just in behind the speed.

“It’s a good field on Saturday but I’d be surprised if he wasn’t right in the finish.”

Palmetto hasn’t raced since finishing unplaced in the Doomben Cup (2000m) in May and in hindsight, Sargent says it was a run too far.

But the five-year-old was only beaten 5-1/2 lengths by Huetor in the Group 1 and Sargent made the most of the trip by spelling him in Queensland.

Perfect Thought also earned an appearance during the Brisbane winter, defeating all but Kovalica in the Queensland Guineas.

Sargent wants to see him put his hand up in Saturday’s Ikon Services Handicap (1600m) after a dour return when midfield behind Pericles over 1400m at Rosehill two weeks ago.

“I don’t know why but his first-up runs, every time, have just been runs,” Sargent said.

“But he should be at a better level now, he’s got soft draw in one. I’d expect a good run if he’s going to go where we think he’ll go.

“If he happened to win on Saturday, we’d take him down to the Makybe Diva (Stakes) at Flemington. If not, he can go to the Cameron (Handicap), that’s the softer option.”

Sargent will also saddle up Outlandos in the same race but expects him to need the hitout as he heads towards the Metropolitan (2400m).

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