2016 Epsom Handicap the Target for Le Romain

June 23rd, 2016

Le Romain stormed onto the Australian racing scene through an impressive autumn campaign this year, and trainer Kris Lees has revealed he will set the rising four-year-old for an appearance in the 2016 Epsom Handicap (1600m) upon resuming in spring.

Le Romain will be set for the 2016 Epsom Handicap upon resuming in spring. Photo: Steve Hart

Le Romain will be set for the 2016 Epsom Handicap upon resuming in spring. Photo: Steve Hart

Trialling well in the lead-up to his competitive return this year, Le Romain stormed home to win the Schweppes Quality (1000m) first-up on January 23rd before making a strong transition to black type company when second in the Group 3 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) a fortnight later.

Placing second behind Press Statement in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m), the Hard Spun gelding produced undoubtedly a career-best effort to date to beat a classy field to the line in the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) on March 6th.

Having been returned to the paddock after suffering a minor ailment when seventh in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) on March 19th, Lees told Racing Ahead that La Roman will return to racing in August, with a view towards reaching the 2016 Epsom Handicap in peak fitness.

“I think the Epsom would be a logical target for him, having already won a Group 1 race at Randwick already over the mile,” Lees said.

“He’ll probably kick off in a 1200m race in late August.”

Lees said he will look towards races like the Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) and Group 1 Longines Mile (1600m) in Victoria as targets for Le Romain, should be perform to a high standard in Sydney.

“If he performed well and deserved his spot, he’d probably make a trip down south,” he said.

Trialling well in the lead-up to his competitive debut, Le Romain stamped himself as one to watch when third in the TAB.com.au Handicap (1200m) in September last year; progressing to success in the Harry Meyn Foundation Maiden (1200m) and second in the Ranvet BM67 (1200m) before returning to the paddock.

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