Jumping switches on McEvoy pair

Schooling over jumps may be the recipe to switch on a pair of Tony and Calvin McEvoy runners.

SECRET BLAZE. Picture: Racing Photos

The Tony and Calvin McEvoy stable are likely to resist the temptation of sending Secret Blaze on a hurdling career despite the gelding showing promise over jumps. 

Instead, the practise of running Secret Blaze in a hurdle school last month was part of a training tool to get the gelding focussed for race day. 

Secret Blaze, and stablemate Cape Of Good Hope, meet in the Alex Butcher Memorial Trophy (2000m) at Caulfield on Saturday with Calvin McEvoy hopeful, rather than confident, of success. 

In the lead-up to the Group 3 Easter Cup (2000m) at Caulfield on April 16, Secret Blaze finished second in a Cranbourne hurdle school eight days prior. 

"We gave him a hurdle trial leading into the Easter Cup and I was so confident that had sparked him up and he was going to run a super race," McEvoy said. 

"But he had a raised temperature the morning of the race, which then led to a bad blood. 

"So, we had to back off him, but he's back up to speed now and he's a very fit horse. 

"He's got a good base, but he may need the run as he's coming off that setback a few weeks ago, but he's in good order and he's a good stayer." 

Like Secret Blaze, Cape Of Good Hope is a good jumper and like his stablemate will be kept to the flat. 

But Cape Of Good Hope needs to start showing the stable a glimpse of form to give them some signs of hope moving forward. 

Cape Of Good Hope has now had three runs back following a long break and is coming off a last start ninth over 1700m at Flemington on Anzac Day. 

"I thought we were on the right track at Bendigo, but the other day I was a little bit disappointed in that when they got to him, he half-gave-up," McEvoy said. 

"That has always been the concern as he's getting a bit older and was off the scene for a long time. 

"We're going to roll forward, he's very fit now, finally up to the 2000 metres, which is his trip, so it's an important race on Saturday and he needs to perform."

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