Kent sees potential in Moby Dick

Moby Dick will not contest a feature race at Bendigo this Saturday, but it will not surprise Michael Kent Jnr if he one day he ends up a headline act.

That hasn’t always been the case, though.

The son of Toronado is the raging favourite for the $150,000 Balgownie Estate Bendigo 3YO Handicap, which is a far cry from the races Kent and his training partner Mick Price had in mind for him at the start of the season.

“He’s probably the most improved horse in the stable,” Kent said.

“If you’d asked me six months ago how’s he going, I wouldn’t have really known. He was in no-man’s land and he wasn’t really impressing anybody.

“But we’ve just been patient with him, allowed him some time and he’s come back in this prep, his action’s really freed up and, gee, he can move.

“It just shows with horses, if you wait for them and expose them at the right time, they can do nice things for you.”

Moby Dick’s first two starts were over 1200 metres at Pakenham, winning by 3-3/4 and three lengths respectively, and while he drops back to 1100m at Bendigo, Kent said the metro-class race it was the right lead-in to the $175,000 VOBIS Gold Dash (1200m) at Caulfield on April 27.

“He’s found two races in lower grade where there’s been pace on, which really suited him, and it’s a natural progression to go to ‘town’,” Kent said.

“My only fear would be (dropping) back to 1100, but there looks to be enough pace on paper.

“From a kinder draw (barrier three), he doesn’t have to get too far back.”

Moby Dick is one of three guaranteed runners at Bendigo for the stable, but Kent is hoping that will become four with Golden Path the emergency for the Golden Mile.

The four-year-old did not have the clearest passage first-up over 1400m at Flemington, but was beaten just over 1-1/2 lengths, and Kent said Saturday’s $200,000 Listed event was a suitable second-up option.

“It was a very good first-up run, he never had much room late and kept closing strongly,” he said.

“It was probably an ideal first-up run with a view to going to the mile second-up.

“We always thought this race would appeal to him; big track, mile, he’s a long-striding horse- he’s just got to get a run now.”

Beau Mertens will ride Golden Path, who has barrier four, if he gains a start, while Jye McNeil has the job aboard Moby Dick.

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