By Brad Gray
With the new racing season starting and the Sydney spring carnival on our door step, here are 10 horses to follow over the coming months.
Doesn’t need any justification to be on this list. She is ranked the best turf horse in the world on the back of 17 straight victories and won her four starts over the spring by a combined margin of 17.4 lengths. She’ll kick off her autumn campaign on August 19 in the Warwick Stakes at Royal Randwick. With Hartnell ducking off the Melbourne to dodge her, barring misfortune, it’s hard to see anything getting near her again this preparation let alone beating her.
The ‘Grey Flash’ just gets better with age. At least that’s the opinion of co-trainer Michael Hawkes who said the now seven-year-old is bouncing around like a horse five years his junior. The last time we saw him he produced one of the most stunning wins we’ve ever witnessed on an Australian race track. It was his third TJ Smith Stakes victory. He is the early favourite for The Everest for a reason.
Hasn’t had much luck in his career at the elite level to date. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree as far as this beautiful looking colt goes as he is every bit his old man Thorn Park appearance-wise. Bryce Heys will be hoping performance-wise too as Thorn Park claimed his Group One as a five year old. Spieth is yet to be locked in for a slot in The Everest but you’d be surprised if he wasn’t there on the big day. This is his season.
This five-year-old is already a three-time Group One winner and one of the most genuine WFA stars among New South Wales’ racing ranks. He launches his spring campaign in the Group Two Missile Stakes this Saturday. Kris Lees hasn’t bedded down a campaign for the versatile sprinter-miler but he has made no secret of the fact that he’d love to see him as one of the 12 Everest runners.
Not much has gone right in the short career of this talented daughter of High Chaparral. Her win in the Group Two Silver Shadow last autumn was breathtaking. The last time we saw her was over the spring in the Group One Coolmore Classic where she started hard in the market. Unfortunately she bled and incurred the three month mandatory ban. Chris Waller has indicated that she’ll be kept to sprint trips for the immediate future.
This Snitzel colt has always been a big rangy galloper and off his trials this time in he looks to have started filling out his frame. In the two-year-old features over the autumn he was bogged down by heavy tracks. He is currently $15 with TAB for the Golden Rose but Gerald Ryan is happy for Menari to tell him whether he wants 1400m or is better off sticking to the sprint trips. He has already had two trials so the Rosebud (August 12) looms as a likely starting point.
We’ve only seen this Lonhro colt twice but what he did at his second outing when getting out to 1400m suggested he is a galloper with a big future. That catapulted him to the top of Golden Rose betting with TAB at $11 sharing favouritism with Sires Produce winner Invader. He could very well be the horse that gives James Cummings his first Group One for Godolphin. Untapped.
Siege Of Quebec
Plenty of spring prospects have emerged over the winter months including Addictive Nature, Calculated and D’argento but the one that more ‘ready-made’ for this spring is unbeaten colt Siege Of Quebec. He is following a very similar path to that of his full brother Bull Point who went on to run third in a Golden Rose. He has only won both of his starts by half a length but don’t let that fool you. He is a bulldog and only does what he has to do.
While Chris Waller’s usual staying suspects will return again this spring (Who Shot The Barmen I’m looking at you), it’s his new acquisition that has been turning heads at the barrier trials. Tom Melbourne is a rogue seven-year-old who has a history of overracing but if Waller can get him to better conserve his energy, there could be a big win in him over the upcoming carnival.
It’s been an amazing rise to the top for Egg Tart who ended last campaign as a two-time Group One winner having won the South Australian and Queensland Oaks. It’s unfair to tar Egg Tart with the same brush as Winx but she’ll likely follow the same preparation as the champion mare did after she took out the Queensland Oaks – Theo Marks into the Epsom. The daughter of Sebring has won six straight and possesses a turn of foot which should see her make the transition to open company.