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Ad Lavish Thinker getting a well-deserved pat after winning his maiden at Sale. (Scott Barbour/Racing Photos)

Stokes has Lavish thoughts with stayer

29 June 2023 Written by By Craig Brennan – Racing & Sports

The 2500 metres of the Mahogany Challenge Final is expected to suit So You Think gelding, Lavish Thinker.

Trainer Phillip Stokes knows the horse has one thing in his favour when he heads to Flemington.

The 2500m of the Mahogany Challenge Final (2500m) on Saturday is the distance that Lavish Thinker is looking forward to according to the trainer.

Lavish Thinker, who will be having his eighth start when he lines up on Saturday, reminds Stokes a little of his former stayer Good Idea who won the 2021 Adelaide Cup.

“He's a So You Think and if you look at his profile and compare his profile to a horse like Good Idea that won an Adelaide Cup and other staying races, he's in front of him at the same stage,” Stokes said.

Good Idea won his maiden at Strathalbyn over 2000 metres at his fifth start. That's how slow he was over the shorter distances.” - Phillip Stokes

Lavish Thinker ran second at his first two starts, firstly over 1400m at Geelong and then over 1600m at Bendigo and was just behind the placegetters over 1400m at Cranbourne at his solitary start in his second preparation.

The gelding has stood up to racing and Stokes' training this campaign which commenced at Geelong over 1400m in May.

At his second run this time in, Lavish Thinker scored over 1717m at Sale before running sixth over that trip again at Sale on June 7.

(Scott Barbour/Racing Photos)

Making his city debut, Lavish Thinker finished eighth at Flemington behind First Immortal, an opponent again on Saturday.

But it won't be an easy task on Saturday with Lavish Thinker drawn widest in gate 16, although he has in form jockey Zac Spain in the saddle.

“He's drawn the carpark, but he's definitely looking for the trip now,” Stokes said.

“We need a bit of luck but I'm happy with the horse. He's a real stayer, and he's got a clean set of lungs. “ – Phillip Stokes

“I'm hopeful on Saturday, but I'm confident the trip won't be a worry.”

Good Idea ran fourth in the 2022 Adelaide Cup and was retired after last year's Pakenham Cup, winning six of his 54 starts and almost $650,000 in prizemoney.

“He was a good horse for the stable and did a good job,” Stokes said of the stable stalwart.

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