Red Alto almost ready to deliver knock out

By: Craig Brennan Thursday 21 November 201

Red Alto has a knack of bobbing up at long odds and is again an outsider for his next assignment in the Ballarat Cup.

He won the 2018 Bendigo Cup at $71 and on Saturday lines up at Ballarat over 2000m listed at the same price in early markets.

While Red Alto's latest form does not look inspiring, trainer Brent Stanley says the seven-year-old is almost ready to put his best foot forward.

After a four-run campaign in Queensland during winter, Red Alto was given an extended break.

He has had three runs back this spring.

"He's been racing very fat but I think he'll run a really good race on Saturday and that will have him at his peak," Stanley said.

"He's been poking along well and he ran well at Flemington last time.

"He's drawn well so he won't have a tough run and it wouldn't surprise if he ran top four or five."

Mindful of Red Alto's ageing legs, Stanley has a 90m pool at his disposal and the use of a water walker, but he says nothing beats a track gallop.

The trainer said Red Alto canters around the paddocks at the Sutton Grange property Stanley trains from, however in track gallops the gelding only does as much as he wants to.

"He's got the ability," Stanley said.

"He's won over $600,000 for a reason. He ran fourth in a Derby as a three-year-old and has been a consistent horse for a long time now.

"We do a lot of slow, long work with him but he eats his head off and when it come to gallops, he's very lazy.

"He's just one of those horses and on his old legs, you have to nurse him a bit and take your time."

After Saturday's race Stanley said there were a few options with the $300,000 Pakenham Cup (2500m) on December 7 among them.

Second emergency Harbour Views remains the $3.30 top pick for Saturday's race but on Thursday was no closer to gaining a start, needing two scratchings to get in the field.

The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace trained Dr Drill is the $3.70 second elect with Fifty Stars on the next line at $5.