Brilliant Victorian four-year-old Chilli Palmer has arrived in Queensland.
Recently transferred to the stables of Belinda McCarthy, the Elsu speed freak will be set for the Brisbane winter carnival features starting next month.
And local fans will get their first glimpse of the star pacer this Friday.
Connections have confirmed that Chilli Palmer will trial between races at Albion Park as he prepares for the Gr.2 $60,000 Garrards Sunshine Sprint on July 5.
Other targets during the campaign include the Gr.3 $45,000 4 & 5yo Championship plus the Gr.1 $100,000 Blacks A Fake.
“The trial is just purely about familiarization and an opportunity to stretch his legs after he arrived earlier this week. He’s taken no harm from the trip and he settled in well so that’s pleasing.” McCarthy said.
The proven Gr.1 winner has not started since finishing an excellent third in the $50,000 4 & 5yo Championship at TABCORP Park, Melton on May 30 behind Lennytheshark and Inky Cullen.
Chilli Palmer has won 7 of his 13 starts this season while banking more than $165,000 in prizemoney.
“The Brisbane winter carnival has been part of his program all season long and we’re excited about his chances, I know the owners are looking forward to seeing him strut his stuff in these big races.
“As we all know, this is a very special talent with amazing speed and Luke is excited about taking the drive behind him. He stayed with us earlier this year when he competed in the Chariots.
“The hard style of racing should suit his racing pattern and hopefully we can get some luck with some good draws, we’re expecting him to perform really well.”
Chilli Palmer has already collected three feature events so far this season with the McInerney Ford Classic at Gloucester Park last November plus the 4yo Bonanza defeating Guaranteed at Melton and the Geelong Pacing Cup where he outsprinted champion pacer Smoken Up.
Overall, Chilli Palmer has won 11 of his 19 career starts to date.
By Chris Barsby (Harness Racing Australia)