Leith Innes riding Kawi to a win in Wellington, New Zealand.
Leith Innes riding Kawi to a win in Wellington, New Zealand. Martin Hunter

Trainer doubts Kawi's chances in Railway Stakes

NEW Zealand trainer Allan Sharrock doubts champion galloper Kawi can take out Saturday's Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) in Perth.

But he can't wait to see the five-time Group 1 winner racing at weight for age in the Kingston Town Classic a fortnight later.

Kawi has top weight of 58.5kg in the Railway, a hefty two kilos more than the next highest in the weights,  Disposition and Pornichet.

"I think it's too tough, to be honest,” Sharrock told Racing.com's Racing Ahead on RSN 927.

"When I looked at the three races I was going (to Perth) for, I thought this was the hardest one.

"They're all getting a bit of weight off him.

"What we want to see is a top-five placing, hitting the line, and going back to weight-for-age (in the Kingston Town Classic).”

A winner of 13 of his 27 starts, six-year-old Kawi has won all five of his Group 1s in the past 15 months and would have been a contender for spring riches in Melbourne.

However Sharrock was determined to dodge super mare Winx, describing her as a freak.

Kawi began his Perth mission with a 3¼-length fourth in the Group 2 Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) at Ascot on November 5.

Sharrock said Kawi had benefitted from that run and adjusted well to the warm Perth weather.

"He's coping really, really well. I don't think that (the heat) is an issue now,” he told Racing Ahead.

"All we want to see is natural improvement from 1400m to 1600m, and that'll top us off nicely for the Kingston Town.”

Kawi will be ridden by Michael Walker.

Perth's leading owner Bob Peters, who won the 2014 Railway with Elite Belle, is leading the charge against Kawi and the interstate raiders.

He has five runners in the Railway - Perfect Reflection, Disposition, Heart Starter, Ideal Image and Neverland.

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