Australia’s champion pacer Leap To Fame is heading to New Zealand.
Leviathan owner Kevin Seymour said it was no longer an if, but a when Leap To Fame crossed the ditch to chase the $1 Million The Race by Grins at Cambridge on April 12.
“The race is a target and we are well advanced in talks with slot holders,” he said.
“We said a while back he wouldn’t be going to the Perth race and that NZ was the aim.
“We’ve got a pretty clear plan in place and it includes taking him to Cambridge.
“We might have a slot announcement sooner than people expect.”
Leap To Fame returned for his first start since winning the Brisbane Inter Dominion final on December 16 when he cruised to victory at Albion Park last Saturday night.
But trainer-driver Grant Dixon thinks the five-year-old would do with another run before heading to the Hunter Cup at Melton on Saturday week.
“We’ll run him again this week … if the race stands-up,” he said.
Then Leap To Fame will be flown to Melbourne for a hit-and-run $450,000 Hunter Cup raid.
From there, Dixon and Seymour are looking at the $100,000 Group 2 Newcastle Mile on February 23.
“It looks a better option to try and book his Miracle Mile spot than going to the lead-up sprints the week before the Mile,” Dixon said.
“He’d have to go 1min48sec or so in a lead-up sprint and quicker again in the Miracle Mile the week after.
“Getting more of a break between Newcastle and the Miracle Mile suits better.”
The $1mil Miracle Mile is at Menangle on March 10.
“Providing he comes through that well, Cambridge will be the next target after that,” Dixon said.
“He’s thriving on the racing and we get to space his runs a bit, so there’s no reason he shouldn’t be fine to go.”
Dixon played down the need for Leap To Fame to have a “decent spell” at some stage.
“I’m not sure about that,” he said. “He does so well with a week or two off here and there. He’s raring to go again after that.
“I actually don’t know how he’d go if we turned it out for a while and had to bring him right back up again.”
Leap To Fame could have another “mini” break after the Race by Grins before targeting his home town riches through the Queensland Constellations in July.
Deeper into the year, the Victoria Cup and Sydney Inter Dominion loom large,
Dixon said consideration would also be given to the New Zealand Cup, but that’s a discussion for well after the Race by Grins.
“It (NZ Cup) is a race I’d love to be part of and I think the two miles would suit him, but we’ve got plenty of time to think more about that,” he said. - Adam Hamilton