Michael Hickmott will step out a big team of horses on his home track at Murray Bridge on Saturday.
The in-form horseman has enjoyed a brilliant 2020-21 racing season, having produced 26 winners, 18 of those at metropolitan level, with a strike-rate of 30 per cent.
He will saddle up six runners, three of them first-up, and said there was plenty of upside with import Don’tdreamit’sover, who was narrowly beaten in the $102,250 Alcopop Series Final at Morphettville last time out.
“Although he was beaten the other day, I was delighted with the run,” Hickmott said.
“We had to ride him completely out of his comfort zone because of the way the track was playing and he just got to the front too soon.
“He’s heading in the right direction for sure. I’d like to see him measure up to a CS Hayes Memorial or RA Lee if continues his progression.”
Lightly raced filly Echoes In Eternity has plenty of potential going forward as she continues to learn the racing game. She was runner-up at Morphettville on debut before a game effort behind fellow local Alleboom at Flemington down the straight on Melbourne Cup Day.
“I really like her,” Hickmott said.
“Physically she’s got a lot of upside, mentally she’s still doing a bit wrong.
“But I am very positive about her moving forward when she learns to harness some of her ability. She’s going to be a genuine Saturday class filly and hopefully go beyond that.”
Hickmott said promising sprinter Pindaric may be his sole runner in the 1200m, with Promoter likely to stay at home for one more week.
“I think I’ll wait for Gawler next week with Promoter,” he said, “but Pindaric is a horse who really excites.”
Hickmott said he’d watched the way leading trainer David Jolly had developed his sprinters over the years and would take a similar path with the son of Fastnet Rock.
“I’ve sat back growing up in South Australia and watched the way David has developed so many good sprinters: spacing them out and letting them continue to come on,” he said.
“He’s done it with a lot of good horses. I’m not going to be in a rush to over-race this horse and he’s certainly going in the right direction.
“He’s 17 hands and every bit of 600kg. He’s going to be a better horse in the spring,:
Former Kiwi Tibetan is on a seven-day back-up after an eye-catching effort last week behind La Richesse.
“I didn’t want to go straight to the 1800m fresh with him,” Hickmott said.
“He’s difficult to get the work into as he’s so relaxed at home. I thought his run the other day was really good with the weight and he’s going the right direction.
“Mentally he lets himself down – he’s a bit of a thinker.”
Fellow former Kiwi, Lord Vladivostok, also owned by Tommy Temptinstall, is another Hickmott has a very big opinion of, having won three of nine starts.
“I love this little horse,” Hickmott said.
“He’s been gelded and come back in a really good manner. He’s always been the pick of those Kiwis of Tommy’s. Aqueduct created an impression, but he’s the pick of them that come over.”
And he was cautious regarding the debut of That’s Justified, a former Alice Springs galloper who will have his first ever start on grass, having won having 14 of 42 starts on the dirt.
“I’ve had a lot to do with racing in the Territory, but it’s a complete ‘suck it and see’ job and we’re just going to have to play that ball as it bounces,” Hickmott said.
“He came down in great condition, we’ll just see how he goes. He worked quite well with Pindaric the other day…”
PHOTO: Don’tdreamit’sover winning at Morphettville last month.