Through Irish Eyes ready for Flemington trip

Promising stayer Through Irish Eyes returns to the scene of his biggest win which in turn could lead to a Melbourne Cup qualifier in early winter.

The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained Through Irish Eyes runs in the Kennedy Grand Handicap Classic (2500m) at Flemington on Saturday, his first test back at the track since May last year.

Through Irish Eyes won the Listed VRC St Leger (2800m) at Flemington before returning to the track for the Listed Andrew Ramsden Stakes (2800m) at Flemington.

After looming large in the straight, Through Irish Eyes went on to finish fifth in the Ramsden Stakes behind Realm Of Flowers.

While Realm Of Flowers won a ballot exemption into the Melbourne Cup but did not take her place, those that finished immediately in front of Through Irish Eyes – Grand Promenade, Persan and Miami Bound – all lined up in Australia’s most famous race.

Through Irish Eyes did not start racing until the January preceding the Ramsden Stakes and following that effort required a long break to get over the rigours of his first campaign.

He has had two starts in Sydney to start his campaign, both times finishing in the second half of the field, and Eustace said Through Irish Eyes looks suitably placed on Saturday to run well.

“His two runs back have been good,” Eustace said.

“It’s a really nice race for him on Saturday. It’s a mile-and-a-half, back at Flemington, where he put up his best performance winning the St Leger and to my eye, he’s ready to fire.

“He had some pretty hard racing during his last prep, which his first racing prep as well, so we were mindful of wanting to give him a good break.

“We just want to see him come back, get into some winning form again, but all going well, he could be a Ramsden horse again.”

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