Kentuckiana Lodge pacer Republican Party is in for a stern test in the Group Three Junior-Free-For-All, but his trainers are picking he is well and truly up for it.

The classy pacer will attempt to continue his outstanding spring when starting in the feature event on New Zealand Cup Day.

On one hand, trainers Cran and Chrissie Dalgety are stepping Republican Party up to race the hardy open class types who have just missed out on starting in the New Zealand Cup.

On the other, they are simply starting the horse in his grade.

“The horse is at a rating now where these kinds of races are the only option for him,” Cran said. 

“We have been lucky enough to win ten races with him now and his rating has risen accordingly.”

“Perhaps with your average three-year-old you wouldn’t be lining up against the older open class horses.”

“While we have a huge amount of respect for them, we head into this race confident in our horse and his ability to handle the occasion.”

Republican Party steps up to 2600m on Tuesday, a distance he hasn’t had a lot of experience over.

But again, the Dalgetys have full faith in their horse.

“His attitude and his racing manners give us a good amount of confidence about the 2600m” Cran said.

“He is a horse you can fire up the gate and he will relax and come back underneath you.”

“That was evident in his last start win at Ashburton where he burnt had but steadied up very quickly.”

“The kind of temperament is important over longer distances.”

“The distance shouldn’t be a worry, being a Bettor’s Delight he has a great constitution and we think he will relish it.”

Blair Orange will again link up with Republican Party in the Junior Free-For-All.

The pair were seen in action at the New Zealand Cup Trials where Republican Party was given a quiet trial.

“Anyone who watched it would have seen Blair never let him go at any stage.”

“We were absolutely rapt with that, he sprinted up very nicely when he got into the clear.”

“It didn’t take anything out of him at all, it was the perfect hit out.”

“Bring on Cup Day.”

As always, tactics will be left to Blair.

But there look to be plenty of options for the reinsman with Republican Party from barrier 7 on the front line. 

The pacer is part of an eight-strong team Kentuckiana Lodge is taking to New Zealand Cup Day.

Plenty more updates from the stable will follow as the big day gets closer.