Nat King Cu Vulnerable first up

Canberra based trainer Nick Olive warns Nat King Cu may be a shade vulnerable first up when he makes his return to the races at Thoroughbred Park on Friday.

While not one to hide his high opinion of Nat King Cu Olive admits Friday's race will prove quite a challenge for the son of King Cugat.

"I feel he does have a big task ahead of him on Friday, he's got to carry 60kg against some nice up and coming horses," Olive said.

"It's a fairly good field so if he can win on Friday then he has definitely come back super.

"I expect him to run really well but I do feel he has a few things against him."

Stepping out at just his seventh career start, Nat King Cu proved quite the punters pal last preparation having saluted the judge on four of five occasions, three of which as the well supported favourite.

Although unable to feature in town at the back end of his last preparation, Olive remains confident he can prove competitive in the top grade this time in.

"I'd really like to get him back to Sydney this time in," Olive said.

"I haven't got a certain race picked out for him at this stage but if we could win a race with him in Sydney it would be fantastic.

"I'm confident he will take the next step this time in."

Given time by Olive to make the steady progression through the grades at Canberra last campaign, Olive now hopes to get Nat King Cu back up to the mile and admits he is already showing him signs that he is heading in the right direction.

"He's come back great," Olive said.

"He might just be a touch more dour this time in but I'm really happy with the way he's going.

"He wasn't asked to do much in his recent trial and I really think he'll appreciate the extra 300m on Friday."

Canberra's leading jockey Brendan Ward will continue his association with the four-year-old having partnered him at all his career starts to date.