AN AUSTRALIAN campaign is tentatively on the cards for talented pacer Whittaker.
Set to resume at Addington on Friday night, Whittaker could form part of a boutique team trainer Mark Jones is considering taking to Menangle as part of his desire to have an Aussie base.
Having previous declared his intention of training at the world class facility, Jones’ move gained momentum with the recent news of fellow Kiwi trainer Tim Butt heading to Menangle.
“Whittaker will go to Menangle,” Jones said. “He’ll probably win one here and go.
“After all, he is a maiden over there and for a horse that has won only three races, slaughtered by the handicapping here.
“Horses like The Bus (one win) will also head that way eventually.”
Whittaker has had just 10 starts – plus the odd minor issue along the way – but Jones is now confident the four-year-old son of Sportswriter is ready to stand up.
Whittaker brilliantly took out a winning double in Southland at the start of the year and looked on track for the Derbys, but things didn’t go as planned and he finished his season with a 10th at Addington last May.
“I’m pleased with how he’s come up,” Jones said. “He has had two trials and seems good.
“He looks way better, and to be honest, I wasn’t happy with him last season. He seems a lot better now.
“But he’s in a tough grade. Look at the field this week, a number of them are nearly free-for-all sort of horses.”
Whittaker will begin from the pole in the Vero Handicap Pace, but takes on the likes of Bite The Bullet, Alpha Rock and Alta Orlando.