Material Man looking to take another step towards All-Star Mile
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Material Man looking to take another step towards All-Star Mile

Top West Australian gallopers have an impressive record when they fly east to raid Victoria's big prizes.

Cox Plate and Caulfield Cup winner Northerly was the ultimate WA hero, but horses like Placid Ark, Miss Andretti, Scenic Blast (both Royal Ascot winners as well) and VRC Derby winner Plastered all made their mark in recent decades.

Lucy Warwick.

Lucy Warwick. Credit:Simon Merritt

Material Man, the WA challenger in Saturday's group 1 Futurity Stakes at Caulfield, has yet to hit those heights, but Racing Victoria senior executive Greg Carpenter, for one, believes the former Perth Cup winner is good enough to be competitive at that level.

The galloper is trained by Justin Warwick and will be ridden in the Futurity by his daughter, Lucy, who is one of WA's promient jockeys.

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Material Man is on course for a tilt at the All-Star Mile - he was in the top ten votegetters when the field was announced on Thursday - and the Futurity is his second run in Melbourne. He finished a good sixth behind outsider Manuel in the CF Orr Stakes at Caulfield over the same 1400 metre distance of the Futurity two weeks ago.

''He's spot on. I think he's a very easy horse to train, he loves his job, he loves racing. The main thing with him is keeping him from not working too hard, as he loves to work.

''He is fit, hopefully he should get a nice run from barrier four and I don't see why he should run a bad race,'' Lucy said.

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''He had a great campaign last prep. He was second and third in the Railway and the Kingston Town, both group 1s. After that dad decided that we would give him a little break and freshen him up for this campaign.

''It's going to be pretty awesome for the next month as he is nominated for the next four Saturdays so I will be rattling up the frequent flyer points.''

Riding in group 1s in Perth is one thing. Is she daunted at the prospect of lining up on Material Man in a $5 million race at Flemington in three weeks time?

''I will probably have ridden in three group 1s here by then, so I should be calm by then. They are not worth $5 million but they are group 1s.''

Michael Lynch is The Age's chief soccer reporter and also reports on motor sport and horseracing

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