A pleasing trial in Tasmania on Tuesday morning has cult figure The Cleaner on track for his cameo appearance in Melbourne this autumn, reports racing.com.

The crowd favourite, who was one of the feelgood stories of last year’s Spring Racing Carnival, ramped up his preparations this time in with a 700-metre trial at his home track of Longford.

The seven-year-old finished second to local sprinter Huss Style, a three-time winner at distances between 1200m and 1350m, in a performance that pleased his trainer Mick Burles.

“I didn’t really expect all that much of him,” Burles said. “It was only 700 metres and they were nearly all sprinters in it, so he did well.

“He pulled up well, he didn’t blow much and we’ve still got a fortnight to go until his first race. He’s on target.”

WATCH: The Cleaner's third placing in the Emirates Stakes



Burles has set his sights on the $100,000 Listed George Adams Plate (1600m) on 25 February as the first-up target for The Cleaner, who has not started since finishing unplaced as favourite in the Railway Stakes in Perth on 24 November.

The George Adams will be his lone start before the $1 million Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on 14 March.

That will be The Cleaner’s first start back in Melbourne since his third placing in theGroup 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m) on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

That was the final start in a stellar Melbourne spring, which included victory in the Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes and the Group 3 JRA Cup (2040m), both at Moonee Valley, where he also finished ninth in the Cox Plate.

The Cleaner’s trial came two days before his three-quarter-brother goes through the ring at the Magic Millions Tasmanian Yearling Sale.

Like The Cleaner, the colt is by Savoire Vivre, and is out of Private Nip, who is also a product of The Cleaner’s dam Dash Of Scotch.