Connections were pleased with their choice to send Hamada to Newbury as he won the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Geoffrey Freer Stakes.
The son of Cape Cross has been on fire in his three starts since returning from a lengthy spell off the track and made it four wins in a row on Saturday in the Group Three contest.
The four-year-old, who was sent off at 7/4 under James Doyle, was always handy throughout the race as stable companion Walton Street set the pace.
Raymond Tusk and Hamada come through to join Adan Kirby’s mount in the straight and it was the latter who had too much at the business end, securing a two-length victory.
There were options open for Hamada but trainer Charlie Appleby felt it prudent to stay away from York with Flemington on the horizon.
“We decided to swerve the Ebor with both Hamada and Walton Street in the hope they would go to Newbury and confirm their slot for Australia,” he said.
“We felt it was the slightly easier option, going to Newbury rather than York, and it’s worked out really well. Hamada is getting better with racing and I feel he’s got the right sort of profile to go to Australia.
“We’ll find out what weights both horses get for the Melbourne Cup next week. I’d quite like to go straight there if possible, as he’s had plenty of racing this year already, but it depends what weight he gets.”