FRESH from his Australasian record-breaking performance, talented youngster Maximus Meridius appears destined to end his debut season on a high.
Proving too slick in an Arizona Blue Series heat where he set a Southern Hemisphere stance, Maximus Meridius is a short-priced favourite for Saturday night’s Final at Club Menangle.
Driven by concession reinsman Lleyton Green, Maximus Meridius covered the mile around the world class venue in 1:56.3 to become the fastest two-year-old male trotter on this side of the equator.
The son of Sebastian K sliced three-tenths of a second from Plymouth Chubb’s 2018 gelding’s record and two-tenths of a second off Royal Aspirations’ ‘boys’ mark set in Cambridge in 2009.
Thrilled with the squaregaiter’s progress, co-trained Dean McDowell is extremely confident Maximus Meridius can register his seventh win from 10 starts.
But whether another record is on the cards remains to be seen!
“You don’t go out and try to break records, but he is capable of going faster and had a little left in hand last time,” McDowell said. “We’ve always thought he has that sort of ability.
“His manners have come a long way and he’s really putting it all together, which makes a big difference.
“It always depends on how the race is run, but if he needs to go quicker again in the Final he will.”
To be driven by Green again, Maximus Meridius has drawn to search for the lead from barrier four, with his main danger, Yukond Me, to come from gate seven.
“Yukond Me has a lot of potential and a stack of ability when he puts it all together,” McDowell said.
“Phoenix Red goes well and you can’t underestimate Malibuu, which won a Breeders’ Crown heat, either.
“I’ve got no doubt he can win, but he’ll still have to go out there and earn it.”