Memories of late trainer Kelso Wood will be revived when Kavak runs in the $2 million Magic Millions 2YO Classic at the Gold Coast.
Wood, who died aged 72 in September 2018, won the race with Real Surreal in 2013, the second time he had the first horse past the post in the Classic.
The Wood-trained Prince Regent was first home in the 1988 Classic only to lose on protest to Molokai Prince.
Two of Wood’s last Magic Millions runners were Sizzling (4th, 2012) and Nikitas (2nd, 2016) who carried the same colours as Kavak.
Sizzling, who later won the Group One J J Atkins, Nikitas and Kavak are all raced by leading Queensland owners David Devine and Neville Morgan.
Devine and Morgan were staunch supporters of Wood who recommended former top jockey Chris Munce take over their horses when he retired.
“I rode a lot for Kelso and combined with Sizzling for some big wins late in Kelso’s career,” Munce said.
Kavak is at $61 for Saturday’s Classic which surprises Munce as he has a race record of a win and two seconds from three starts and will start from barrier one.
“No horse will be fitter than mine and he should be able to get a lovely run,” Munce said.
“He has blinkers for the first time and the inside barrier. It is a very open Millions with probably seven or eight chances.
“He topped off his preparation with a nice trial at Doomben last week.”
Munce won the Millions Classic three times as a jockey and since taking up training has had three runners.
It will be a big day for Munce who also has Boomsara, Skate To Paris and emergency Rothman in the Millions QTIS race.
“Boomsara and Skate To Paris are both well drawn and should get their chance,” Munce said.
“Rothman will need luck to get a run but it was a good win first-up.”