Track form and an excellent second-up record points to Fabrizio being hard to beat in (Thursday)’s Listed Lander Toyota Ladies Day Cup (1400m) at Hawkesbury.
Co-trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott have targeted the $150,000 feature with the lightly-raced seven-year-old, who didn’t fire first-up in last year’s edition when ninth to Duca Valentinois.
But with a lead-up run under belt this time – and an encouraging one at that – the stable is confident he is ready to make a bold bid for victory.
“We’re rapt with the way Fabrizio is going,” stable spokesman Neil Paine said.
“Gai and Adrian tipped him out after three runs, including the Ladies Day Cup, last preparation because he just wasn’t right.
“Fabrizio had a long spell, and is a different horse this preparation.
“Josh Parr has been riding him, and feels we have got the horse back on the job again.
“He has come on nicely since his recent first-up close fourth at Royal Randwick, drops in weight and likes Hawkesbury.
“I’m sure he will run really well.”
Parr, who landed four winners at Rosehill Gardens last Saturday, partnered Fabrizio at his resumption when he made the running under 61.5kg and was beaten just over a length in Torgersen’s 1400m Handicap at Randwick on October 27.
There is a 4kg turnaround in Fabrizio’s favour tomorrow.
Parr rides joint topweight Burning Passion at Hawkesbury, and Adam Hyeronimus, who has won on Fabrizio, has the mount.
“I think Josh took the mount on Burning Passion before he was aware Gai and Adrian decided to start Fabrizio in this race,” Paine explained.
Fabrizio has been to Hawkesbury on three occasions. He won a 1250m trial there on April 24 last year, five days before he returned and won the Group 3 Livamol Hawkesbury Gold Cup (1600m) – one of his three second-up victories.
Burning Passion’s trainer Mark Newnham is expecting his gelding to run well, but warns he is “still not quite there”.
“He is moving well for an old horse (a seven-year-old like Fabrizio) and his blood is good, but his coat hasn’t quite come through yet with all the inconsistent weather of late,” Newnham said.
“I’ve got no doubt he will take improvement from this run tomorrow (Thursday).”
Burning Passion finished seventh to Pierata in the Group 3 Sydney Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on October 13 when resuming, but Newnham pointed out the gelding has never won from seven first-up attempts.
Burning Passion’s second-up record is much better – two wins and two placings from five starts – and a Queensland trip for Doomben’s summer sprints is likely if he performs well at Hawkesbury.
Last year’s successful Ladies Day Cup trainer James Cummings will be represented by Interlocuter (Rachel King), whilst Chris Waller and Joe Pride between them will have five of the 10 starters.
Waller runs Torgersen (Sam Weatherley), Tougherthantherest (Lee Magorrian) and New Universe (Glyn Schofield), whilst Pride’s duo is Newcastle Cameron Handicap winner New Tipperary (Jay Ford) and Pecans (Jason Collett).
Collett won last year’s Ladies Day Cup on Duca Valentinois, and also partnered Fabrizio in his Hawkesbury Gold Cup triumph earlier that year.
Hawkesbury trainer Bernie Kelly is looking forward to taking his promising lightly-raced Beneteau five-year-old Bobbing back to the races for (Thursday)’s $50,000 Ted McCabe Sky Racing Provincial Series Heat (1500m).
Whilst aware his last-start Wyong Class 2 winner is jumping to a Class 5 Plate, he considers Bobbing is up to the task and has a great chance of clinching a hat-trick.
Bobbing has raced only six times for three wins and two seconds – and his victories have come from his last four starts.
Josh Parr rode him for the first time when he came from seventh at the 400m to overpower his rivals over 1350m on soft ground at Wyong on October 21, and stays aboard.
“I prefer to err on the side of caution by spacing Bobbing’s runs,” Kelly said.
“He might be a five-year-old but is not seasoned yet, hence the reason I have been taking baby steps with him.
“I’m wary he is up in class, but he’s down 4kg (from 60 to 56kg) on his latest win.
“Bobbing likes to settle and work into his races, so the big straight at home is in his favour and he won his first race here in July.”