Trainer Tony Pike has been overseeing Not An Option's preparation from afar due to New Zealand being in lockdown in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Cambridge trainer opted to leave the son of Not A Single Doubt in the care of Richard Freedman after he elected to bring stable employees Mark Hills and Chris McNab back to New Zealand before the country went into response Alert Level 4.
“Not An Option is with Richard Freedman at Rosehill,” Pike said. “He was based beside us when we were over there."
“It is a bit of an unusual situation, but they have been great, very helpful and have kept us well informed the whole way through.”
Not An Option will have their first test under the new regime at Randwick on Saturday.
Pike is pleased with Not An Option heading into the Gr.3 Kindergarten Stakes (1100m) after his 900m trial on a Heavy9 track at Rosehill last month.
“Not An Option had a jump out on Tuesday and his trial was very good,” he said.
“The concern on Saturday is his wide draw (12) and it looks like a lot of rain is coming too. At this stage, looking at the forecast, the track is going to be pretty heavy, which is a bit of an unknown for him. But that wide barrier draw might come into play.
“1100m is a touch sharp for him, but if it becomes a bit more testing it might suit him more. This will get him ready for a Group Three 1400m race in two weeks’ time, which is his short-term target over there.”
Not An Option was bred by Aquis Farm with Curraghmore and Hallmark Stud's Mark Baker securing an interest in the colt to bring him to New Zealand to offer him at the yearling sales at Karaka.
He was purchased by Pike for $240,000 and has won two of his four starts including the Gr.2 Wakefield Challenge Stakes (1100m). -NZ Racing Desk, Curraghmore