Months of scheming and planning by Roger James will come down to just 95 seconds at Ellerslie tomorrow.

If the Cambridge trainer is right about Macavelli Miss that's about all the time she should need to win the Herald on Sunday Mile and qualify for the Thorndon Mile.

The Trentham feature on January 29 has been the exciting mare's target since the beginning of her five-year-old preparation.

James knows what it takes to get there - he has had placings in the race before with high-class milers Corndale and Skoozi.

But the way Macavelli Miss, an early $14 fixed odds hope for Trentham, won her last start at Ellerslie on New Year's Day, he may have found a horse to break his duck.

"This mare is definitely capable of winning a good race," said James.

"I've always felt she was well above average - she's just needed time to mature."

The one Thorndon hiccup James didn't need was when a green Macavelli Miss got relegated from first for a crooked finish at Avondale in October.

But the way the early Thorndon ratings are stacking up, James is confident another victory tomorrow should be enough to sneak his three-win mare into the race.

"With any sort of luck she would have won three or four more by now," he said.

"I do have the option of running her in the Anniversary on the first day in which the first three are automatic entries into the Thorndon.

"But I don't believe she's the type who will back up that well."

Alleyrun is the biggest threat to Macavelli Miss tomorrow.

The Chris and Colleen Wood trained mare is missing from the Thorndon nominations.

But the five-year-old mare isn't far short of the best and has a good record at Ellerslie. She had no luck in her last two runs there in much stronger company, for third to Bhandara in the Kings Plate and eighth in the Rich Hill Mile.

The other James-trained runner on trial for Trentham at Ellerslie tomorrow is promising three-year-old Joe's Cook.

James said to forget the gelding's last start miss at Tauranga when he was given a hopeless trip.

The $2.75 fixed odds favourite yesterday is expected to bounce back with a win and book a place in the Wellington Stakes.