Waikato trainer Peter Lock hasn't ruled out tackling mission impossible with Hiflyer if he excels in his Australian debut on Saturday.
The hugely talented galloper will carry 59.5kg in a listed A$150,000 1400m at Rosehill, with Lock sticking loyal to Central Districts jockey Johnathan Parkes.
Hiflyer warmed up for the challenge with a stunning win under 61.5kg at Ruakaka last start and Lock says the rare Kiwi in Sydney winter campaign has been in the offing for a while.
"No disrespect to any of the horses racing at this meeting but it is easier to come here this time of the season and race for A$150,000 than when all the big guns are racing," Lock told the Herald yesterday.
"So we have been aiming him at a few races like this for a while and he will have this one and then all going well another one in two weeks.
"He is here racing for A$150,000 on a good track and that stake isn't far off what he would be racing for at group one level in the first leg of the Triple Crown at Hastings.
"So if he does step up and handle things over here he might well stay here for a while longer."
Two races in the next fortnight and a slight freshen up could even see Hiflyer peaking around about the August 18 comeback for the wonder mare Winx in the group one race named in her honour at Randwick.
While Lock is not considering that challenge yet, he admits if Hiflyer thrives those type of races would have to be considered, especially with race fitness on Hiflyer's side against the returning group one horses with richer targets.
They are here because they could be racing at home on bog tracks for $15,000 or here for $100,000 on a better track.
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"Sure, it is a race we could consider but we might have a problem. If we beat Winx the locals might burn our motel room down," he says with a laugh. "I think we will be pretty safe though, I can't see her being beaten any time soon.
"But if our fella races well and can win one then he might stay on here and those races are all possible."
Lock is thrilled with how Hiflyer and stablemates Dougie and Mr Luigi have travelled, with the latter pair to make their Australian debuts on Saturday week.
"They are here because they could be racing at home on bog tracks for $15,000 or here for $100,000 on a better track.
"But we are not kidding ourselves [that] this is an easy place to come and win a race.
"I respect how much these campaigns have cost the owners so we will try and find the right races for them."
Lock is staying with former jockey Peter Robl and the latter was impressed after riding Hiflyer in trackwork yesterday.
"He said he is ready but we might have a little problem with the draw on Saturday.
"He has got barrier one which we know isn't ideal for him so Johnathan will have to try and get him away from the rails at some stage."
Lock could have tried to get a leading local rider like James McDonald on Hiflyer but said he wanted to reward Parkes's loyalty.
"He has twice travelled to Ruakaka to ride this horse when it was his only guaranteed ride for the day and while it will be a learning curve him, it is for us, too."
Lock hasn't officially trained a winner in Australia, having been unlucky in a Grand National with Coruba Cruise while Stan The Man, who he campaigned there in 1999, did win two races but only after Lock had transferred him to local trainer Ron Quinton because of commitments at home.
"And that could happen with this horse. If he races well and we decide to stay on for more races here rather than go back for the 1400m race at Hastings then we will need to decide whether he goes to another trainer for a while or whether my daughter or son look after him."
Before getting lost looking for somewhere to have lunch in Sydney yesterday, Lock watched She's All Clang bring up his 21st training win for the season at Avondale, with his strike rate of a winner every 4.38 starts the best in the top 50 of the premiership.
"We have been having a great run strike rate wise and one of the reasons is a treadmill I brought in from Germany. It has been amazing."
Hiflyer's race is at 5.10pm (NZ time) on Saturday with Aussie bookmakers rating him only an $11 chance.