Evergreen Godolphin galloper Cascadian almost pulled off the impossible in the All-Star Mile and is set to back-up at Flemington.
The Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) on Saturday came on the radar for Cascadian after the eight-year-old pulled-up in terrific order following his performance in the All-Star Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley last week.
Burdened with a bad draw, Cascadian was forced to go back to third last before charging home to run second to Mr Brightside last week.
"He has done well. He pulled up beautifully from the All-Star Mile," trainer James Cummings said.
"The Australian Cup looks a really intriguing race for him, third-up from a spell."
After a spring last year that saw the gelding campaign in Melbourne, Sydney, back to Melbourne and then Perth, Cascadian has performed as well as ever in his two runs back.
He finished fifth to Artorius in the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes at Randwick on March 4 before his All-Star Mile performance.
"We did only a tiny bit with him (after returning from Perth) to have him running only two lengths away in the finish in the Canterbury Stakes," Cummings said.
"By the time he got through that run, we felt he was ready to run one of the races of his life in the All-Star Mile and he certainly did from a difficult barrier.
"He gave them a pretty big scare. If he got into the clear a little earlier or had a better gate, what might have been?" For his first run at Moonee Valley against a horse who loves the Valley in Mr Brightside, I thought he acquitted himself exceptionally well."
Cascadian has performed well previously when stepped up to 2000m off a quick break.
In 2021 he was beaten narrowly into third place in the Group 1 Cantala Mile at Flemington before backing up a week later, chasing Zaaki home in the Group 1 Mackinnon Stakes.
Cummings said Cascadian will relish the 2000m on Saturday.
"He should be well suited up to 2000 metres in a solidly run Australian Cup.
He's in the form when he backed up and ran second to Zaaki in the Mackinnon the preparation before," Cummings said.