While Brad Rawiller described tomorrow’s Bagot Handicap as a “very tough race”, he noted there was still much to like about Unusual Suspect, which must set a 50-year weight carrying record.
The Wayne Walters trained Astrolin holds the modern day record for lumping the biggest winning weight – he carried 58.5 kg when he won the 1983 renewal of the Bagot.
Unusual Suspect will carry 60.5kg, the same weight he carried to victory in the Werribee Cup earlier in the month.
“The upside to him is that every run he’s improved and you would expect him to improve again,” Rawiller said.
“You saw last year when he ran so good in the Caulfield and Melbourne Cups that each run through that preparation were considerably better.
“In Dubai and after that he went downhill, but this preparation every run he’s improved greatly.”
Rawiller said the step up to the 2800 metres will also favour Unusual Suspect, rated as a $7 chance with Sportsbet.com.au in the Group 3 race where stablemate You Think So and I’m Jake share favouritism at $5.50.
He noted the tempo of the race will be telling as Unusual Suspect needs a genuine speed to produce his best.
“I know I can go in with full confidence that if I can give him a good ride he will be in amongst it,” Rawiller said.