Freedmans launch Special Missile for spring but target might be summer

The training partnership of Richard and Michael Freedman has built a proud record of placing their horses well in just three months since joining forces, but their first winner and best horse, Special Missile, is proving a challenge now.

The Freedmans have been able to keep a 16 per cent strikerate with a small team of horses coming through the  grades by  finding the right races around provincial tracks.

Special Missile returns in the Spring Preview Handicap at Randwick on Saturday.Credit:AAP

“When you are a bit of smaller stable you pick the right races and it has been working well,”  Michael  Freedman said. “We are realistic about our horses and don’t rush them out of their grade.

"Special Missile is a bit different because he is already in open company."

When Special Missile won the  Scone Cup in May,  he  gave the partnership a Listed race as its first winner.  He returns from a spell in the Spring Preview over 1400m on the Kensington track at Randwick on Saturday. It's a  trip he hasn’t won at in 11 attempts, although he has six placings and the signs are promising.

Freedman admits Special Missile offers a different challenge with six wins under his belt from 24 starts.

Saturday will give us an indication how he stacks up against some handy ones that are around his level.

“He is a hard horse to place now. There aren’t that much races for him. He is probably just below that group class, but he is good enough in a race like Saturday,” Freedman said. “I thought his trial was good the other day, and he will run a good race.

“Although he won the Scone Cup at a mile he is probably better at 1400 and 1500 metres, so it is having him ready on the day for those runs.

“We have our thinking caps on with him because the better ones are too good for him, so it might be a short prep and then a break and look to the Magic Millions Cup in January, where he can race for $1 million.

“Saturday will give us an indication how he stacks up against some handy ones that are around his level. He usually leads but he will probably have to let a couple go on Saturday and hopefully find the line.”

Special Missile is a $10 chance in a race where Seaway ($3.70) attempts to go from Winter Challenge winner to Spring Preview winner.

The favourite is Godolphin import Wren’s Day at $2.70 on the back of a barrier trial win. The six-year-old hasn’t raced in a year but does have a second to Cracksman in Prix Ganay, where he was a pacemaker that gave a good kick.

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