There’ll be no messing with the formula when Bjorn Baker’s speedy filly Passeggiata returns at Randwick on Saturday on the back of two runaway trial wins.
It can be hard to assess nine length trial wins and that’s the margin the three-year-old has put on her opposition in both hit-outs leading into the Furphy Handicap (1000m).
Baker said he doesn’t place any real emphasis on winning margins in those trials but feels they’ve laid a nice platform for her to kick off her second preparation.
“I think it was exacerbated in the trial because when others know she’s in the trial they tend to let her do her own thing,’’ Baker said.
“Last time she didn’t go nearly as quick as she could.
“At the end of the day she’s a very fast horse, we’re not going to beat about the bush and say otherwise. She’s a quick horse and speed is her biggest asset.
“She has a super high cruising speed just like her father used to have and the 1000m is ideal for her first-up.”
Dylan Gibbons has been booked for a number of Baker’s leading Randwick chances, including Ozzmosis and Iowna Merc, and Baker said his main piece of advice for the Group 1 winning apprentice will be to keep Passeggiata in her comfort zone.
Whether that’s uncomfortable for the opposition remains to be seen.
“She gets in with no weight and she’s rock hard fit,’’ he said.
“Her work on Tuesday morning was excellent, she didn’t go too quick at all and I was happy with how she was able to relax.”
It’s worth noting the filly, $1.80 with TAB on Wednesday, has raced at Randwick once from a wide gate and had to work to find the front before the effort told on her and she weakened to be beaten 1-1/2 lengths.
That was back in January in an 1100m race and looking back Baker said she didn’t disgrace herself.
“At the time we were disappointed but she had a pretty good prep going to a provincial maiden win to a Saturday win. She’s come back that little bit bigger and stronger,’’ he said.
Like Passeggiata, two-year-old colt Ozzmosis kicked off his career with a Gosford maiden win but Baker said his racing style is completely different.
The youngster was ridden by James McDonald in his debut win where he sat third on the fence and took an inside run before cruising to victory. In his trials he’s sat back and swept home.
Baker is confident Ozzmosis can adapt to whatever unfolds in the Robrick Lodge Handicap (1100m).
“He’s had a couple of really good gallops since and I’m thrilled with how he’s come on,’’ he said.
“There’s no doubt he has a heap of ability and I’m really looking forward to him.
“He has a flexible pattern, whether he leads or sits off, so we’ll have a good look at leave it up to Dylan.”
Iowna Merc reacted well to being gelded with a hard fought first-up win two weeks ago and Baker said he’s benefited from the run ahead of the 50 Year And Life Member Handicap (1200m).
He lines up alongside stablemate O’Tycoon who has also been recently gelded.
While it’s Iowna Merc’s second attempt at 1200m Baker said he’s a different horse to the one that tackled the trip back on Christmas Eve before his spell and gelding operation.
“He’s well set up, I thought he would go very well first-up and that was the case,’’ Baker said.
“He’s a natural athlete so we haven’t had to do too much with him. There’s not a whole heap of him but he’s got a pretty good racing pattern.
“He’s put together a good record in a short period of time. He was inclined to do a lot wrong in the first preparation but he’s switching off a lot better this time.”
– Racing NSW