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Virtuous Circle set for bigger targets - TDN AusNZ

The Liam Howley-trained Virtuous Circle (NZ) (Almanzor {Fr}) could be set for Group 1 targets following his win in the Hugh Wallace-Smith H. at Moonee Valley on Saturday.

A winner on his second start at Mornington in March, the son of Cambridge Stud shuttler Almanzor (Fr) was purchased by his trainer, Andrew Williams Bloodstock (FBAA) and Bevan Smith Bloodstock for $360,000 at the Inglis Classic Yearling Sale in 2021.

"He went to the paddock straight after that and he just came back in, and he knows what it’s all about,” Howley told

"I’d like to think he’s a (Caulfield) Guineas horse but otherwise I thought 2000 metres might be in his hitting zone. Maybe 2400 metres, so maybe he’s a Derby horse.

"Mentally he is (ready), but we will space his runs and run next in the Stutt (S.) back here in four weeks. That gives us time to look after him. That gives us two weeks to the Guineas and gives us a read at that point whether he’s a Guineas horse or we go to the Vase. Hopefully we are still knocking around in late October."


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