Sandown Stakes set to shape Harbour Views spring targets

The Group 3 Sandown Stakes is shaping as the race that could determine the long-range spring plans for Warrnambool-based Harbour Views.

The Matthew Williams-trained galloper runs in Saturday’s 1500m race which is likely to determine Group 1 options for the French-bred gelding.

Williams picked Saturday’s race ahead of the Listed Paris Lane Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on Saturday week as the Sandown Stakes offered a potential start in the Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield on October 9.

While a Toorak start is an option, the Group 1 Cantala Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on October 30 is the preferred target in Williams’ mind ahead of a potential trip to Perth.

Williams was surprised by Harbour Views first-up win in the Listed The Sofitel (1400m) at Flemington on September 11 and said the gelding had trained on well from that assignment, although he would have liked three weeks between runs.

“But this just opens a few more options, rather than next week,” Williams said.

“We’ll have a nom in for the Toorak, but I’d be only half-hearted to possibly concentrate on the Cantala.

“After that Perth could be an option because there is that time between runs to freshen him up and I reckon if he was fresh into the Railway that might suit.

“The last couple of years we were over with Gailo Chop, Lindsay Smith said it seems to work that the Railway is the get back, run on race and the Kingston Town suits the on-pacers.

“I could totally see that with old Gailo, he was hopeless in the Railway and then he switched it around in the Kingston Town.

“So, the Railway could suit Harbour Views being three weeks between runs and fresh.”

The Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) is run at Ascot on November 20.

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