Summary Of Our Trainers’ Tips For All Aged Stakes Day

From Matthew Smith

Horse: Festival Dancer
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 5, James H B Carr Stakes) The three-year-old resumes in the James H B Carr Stakes at Randwick on Saturday as a steppingstone towards a winter campaign in Brisbane where her ultimate goal will be the Queensland Oaks. We made a plan not to rush her back and take our time to get her ready. She is a progressive filly. She proved she can race at that (black-type) level and Queensland is not as strong as Sydney. For all those reasons, we thought we would wait and target Queensland. Festival Dancer usually takes a run or two to hit her straps so expects her to need the hit-out on Saturday in what will be her first start since a Sandown Guineas placing in November.

From Robert & Luke Price

Horse: Count De Rupee
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 6, Hall Mark Stakes) The unprecedented run of wet weather has played havoc with Count De Rupee’s autumn campaign, but the horse is ready to rebound in the Hall Mark Stakes. We missed a jump out and a crucial grass gallop going down to Melbourne because of the wet weather and then he went down there a bit fresh and got lost up the straight. It was the same going into the TJ. He missed a crucial grass gallop that he really likes, and he went from taking a little while to get over the trip to Mellbourne to probably going over the top and being too fresh in the TJ and he blew the start. Count De Rupee was given a crucial barrier trial at Warwick Farm on Monday. We had to see him jump cleanly on Monday, which we saw. He trialled lovely and came through it really nicely, so he is going there rock-hard fit on Saturday. It might have just taken that real fresh edge off him trialling him on Monday too.

From Gary Portelli

Horse: Fireburn
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 4, Champagne Stakes) The only thing that can beat her is bad luck in running. I think she is the best horse by a long way. Neither the small field of six, nor a distance test concern the horse. Fireburn has enjoyed a perfect week and has the right mix of talent and temperament to win the juvenile triple crown. Her resilience and her ability to cope with the pressure of everything. Her relaxed nature and she’s got a bigger motor than most horses. I am just facilitating what she can do. She has got all the weaponry, I’ve just got to make sure she doesn’t fire it off at trackwork.

From Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott

Horse: In The Congo
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 8, All Aged Stakes) He was very gallant in defeat (in the Arrowfield 3YO Sprint). I don’t think he necessarily enjoyed those (Heavy 10) conditions. He was beaten on his merits by a better horse on the day who was deeper into his campaign and maybe enjoyed those conditions a bit more. He will either back up in the All Aged Stakes but with that in mind about the track conditions, we may look to freshen him up towards those sprints in Queensland.

From Gerald Ryan & Sterling Alexiou

Horse: Williamsburg
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 4, Champagne Stakes) Williamsburg steps up to Group 1 level on Saturday after winning his past two starts in stakes grade, including last weekend’s Listed Fernhill Handicap. I just thought, those horses in the Sires’ and those two fillies (Fireburn and She’s Extreme), they’re just too nippy for him over the 1400 on a back-up. So I thought we’d give him two weeks into (the Fernhill Handicap) and then if he came out of it good, I would be a lot happier backing him up in the Champagne. You only get one crack at a Group One Champagne for two-year-olds, so we will see how he does.

Horse: Ellsberg
Message: (Saturday, Randwick Race 8, All Aged Stakes) He will be better suited over the shorter course, and on an improving surface. He’s probably not quite up to a mile in that company (the Doncaster Mile). I do think the horse is a better horse on top of the ground but if the track stays like this, well he is fit and hard and going into it two weeks after a Doncaster. It’s always a good race and you’ve often got your three-year-olds coming in, like Trapeze Artist did.

From The Editor

Sydney Race 3 – Straight Arron
Sydney Race 6 – Big Parade
Sydney Race 8 – Mo’unga

Share this article