Saturday, April 2, 2022 has been circled on Josh Julius' calendar for months.
Originally, April 2 was all about the Golden Mile on his home track at Bendigo.
Julius' stable star Just Folk changed those plans with a brilliant win in last month's Group Two Ajax Stakes in Sydney.
Instead of racing for $250,000 in the Golden Mile, Just Folk will run in Australia's premier mile event, the $3 million Doncaster Handicap at Randwick.
"Thinking forward long range, the Golden Mile was the realistic option for us being on our home track,'' Julius said.
"If he didn't win the Ajax, or was disappointing in the Ajax, we'd probably be back home running in the Golden Mile.
"Here we are having a crack at the Doncaster instead.
"Realistically, with everything that's in place at the moment it's as good a chance as we're going to get at winning a Group One at this stage in terms of where we are as a stable.
"Fingers crossed we get some luck in running, everyone in the field needs luck, you don't win these big races without it.
"The horse is in terrific order and he ticks a lot of boxes going into it."
Sydney's big wet means the Randwick track will be a heavy 10 on Saturday - perfect conditions for Just Folk.
The gelding drops in the weights to 50kg - a big advantage on a heavy track.
"By race nine the track will be nice and chopped up and we'll have a handle on what sort of patterns there are,'' Julius said.
"No matter what condition the track is in by race nine, our bloke will enjoy it. Barrier 10 gives us plenty of options to weigh things up early and make sure in the middle part of the race we're covered up and asleep.
"That would give us every chance up the straight to weave a path and attack the line.
"He's a horse that's really competitive and, when the run is timed right, not many get past him.
"In all of his six wins none of them have been by more than one length and he enjoys a dogfight.
"If he gets in a head-to-head battle with a horse we know he's going to give his all."
A $23 chance in pre-post betting, Just Folk is one of the best wet trackers in the race.
A victory on Saturday would see the galloper join elite company as a Doncaster winner.
"You flick through the honour roll and you see Winx, More Joyous, Haradasun, Grand Armee, Sunline and Super Impose - it's rare air that's for sure. To have a chance to join that list gives me chills thinking about it,'' Julius said.
"Hopefully we can experience it on Saturday. We're enjoying the ride and enjoying being part of it."
While Julius has bigger fish to fry in Sydney, he does have a runner in a big race at Bendigo on Saturday.
Two-year-old filly Motitsi will make her racetrack debut in the $250,000 VOBIS Gold Rush (1000m).
"As it turns out, my first runner on Golden Mile day and I won't be there,'' Julius said.
"She's a really nice filly that will learn a lot from the experience.
"She'll settle in behind them and be hitting the line nice and strong.
"It would be great to get the day off to a flyer there if she happened to produce the goods.
"She's got a bright future and I'm looking forward to seeing how her career progresses after Saturday."
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