Alton planning Queensland trip

It’s 27 years since Gary Alton campaigned a horse in Queensland, but he’s about to return to the Australian state with his stable star Historian.

“The last time I took a horse over there was in 1986,” recalled Alton. “I took Licalong over and won a race at Eagle Farm.”

Licalong won a total of three races and Alton’s latest Aussie-bound campaigner has won the same number of races, but is a far better performed horse, having scored a game win in the Group I Harcourt’s Thorndon Mile at Trentham last January.

Historian took his stake earnings to almost $550,000 with his last-start second to Joey Massino at Ellerslie on March 9. A total of $131,550 of that total has been earned this season in his five starts from Alton’s Cambridge stable.

Alton, aided by the help of his partner, Catherine Cameron, pulled off a great training feat when he produced Historian to win the Thorndon Mile in his third start from his stable.

Historian followed up that Trentham highlight, Alton’s first Group One success, with a fifth to Sangster in the Group I Darci Brahma International Stakes (2000m) at Te Rapa before being beaten a half-length at Ellerslie in his first run for a month.
Historian was odds-on favourite for the Novotel Mile and though beaten Alton was not disappointed.

“I’ve had worries with his feet — he’s had bruised heels, but he is coming right now,” said Alton. “He’s looking good and the plan is to go over to Brisbane at the end of April.”

Historian is unlikely to race again before the Queensland trip, though Alton says he may give him a trial if needed.

“I’ve got no set races for him over there,” said Alton. “There are plenty of options and virtually a race every week that he could run in. I’ll just get him over there and settled in and go from there.”