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Nature Strip deal for The Everest in the planning

A tick over two months out from the $13million The Everest at Randwick, trainer Darren Weir said he could yet have multiple runners in the rich feature with Nature Strip being sought after.

He's a horse that has polarised opinion as to whether he has earned his spot in the 12-horse sprint on October 13, but the only opinions that really matter when it comes down to it are that of an available slot holder - and Weir said talks are underway to get the four-year-old son of Nicconi into the race.

"In the past few days, there has been an inquiry about Nature Strip," Weir told RSN 927's Correct Weight on Sunday.

"I've left it to the owners. There will be a decision, the people who have enquired and the owners are going to work something out over the next couple of weeks.

"Hopefully they can work out something and the horse can get a spot in the race, because the horse is in unbelievable order.

"We were toying with the idea of not galloping him for a little while, but Jarrod mentioned we'll have to gallop him on Monday because he's just too well in himself.

"It's a good sign going forward, so hopefully the owners can work out a deal to get a slot and get in the race."

Fresh from a strong win in Saturday's Group 3 Aurie's Star Handicap (1200m), Voodoo Lad could potentially join a stellar cast in this week's Group 2 P.B. Lawrence Stakes (1400m) that is set to feature a strong Weir hand including the likes of spruiked Japanese import Danon Liberty and current Stella Artois Caulfield Cup favourite Kings Will Dream.

"I wouldn't be against backing him up next week in the Lawrence if he has a good week," Weir added.

"I think the back-up for him would be great, but I'll have to talk to the owner and make sure the horse does well during the week.

"They may not want to go that way.

"To get a Group 1 (after that) would be good for him, but I'm not sure which one (to aim him at)."

Nature Strip, picture Quentinjlang.com

On Voodoo Lad's straight-track form prior to Saturday, he added: "I thought his straight form was good.

"His Newmarket run was terrific. I didn't have a problem with the straight.

"I'd be happy to run at either [Flemington or Caulfield next].

"If you had a leaning, maybe a corner might be better, but I wouldn't think there's a lot of difference to it."

While Theanswermyfriend got a hard-earned victory over stablemate Night's Watch in the VRC Member Damian Cubela Handicap (1400m) at Flemington on Saturday, Weir was certainly positive about the return performance of the runner-up, who carries the famous OTI Racing silks.

"There's a nice win in him somewhere. He's been trialling really well," Weir said.

"We thought we'd come away happy with how he went, but we were really happy with how he went.

"He can get out over a trip, I'm not sure what sort of races, maybe the better country cups, but there's a nice win in him somewhere."

On directing Night's Watch towards the MRC Foundation Cup (the Naturalism), which carries a Caulfield Cup ballot exemption, the trainer said: "I think so, it wouldn't be the worst option.

"We've sat down in the past few weeks with Simon (McCartin) my racing manager, we've got lots of plans for lots of different horses and that (Naturalism) was one of them if he was going well enough.

"The way he went yesterday you'd have to think about heading that way, and then change directions from there if he's not.

"He didn't have the best manners last time in, but this time in, he's been fantastic. He's grown up in himself, and he's a lot better horse to train."

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