2011 Chipping Norton Stakes Next for Melito

February 21, 2011

2011 Chipping Norton Stakes Next for Melito

Successful Sydney trainer Gerald Ryan is confident his classy Redoute’s Choice mare Melito has a mile in her, deciding on the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on March 5 as the next start for last Saturday’s Apollo Stakes winner.

Four-year-old Melito was ultra impressive with a first-up win at Rosehill on February 19, able to defeat Hot Danish by nearly two lengths in the Group 1 Apollo Stakes (1400m).

Already a Group 1 winner having seen success in the Winter Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm during the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival last year, Melito is now being primed to add a second elite level win to her name.

New South Wales Horse of the Year for last season, Meltio is unlucky not to have amassed more Group 1 victories to date having been narrowly defeated in events including the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) and Group 1 B.T.C. Cup (1200m) in 2010.

After her vibrant return to racing in the Apollo, which was Melito’s maiden first-up win, Ryan will next start her in the Chipping Norton Stakes.

If she fails at that assignment and finds the mile too testing, a drop back in distance with events including the Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on April 9 and the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) on April 23 will become the target.

However, if she proves herself in the Chipping Norton the prestigious $2 million Group 1 Doncaster Mile, considered Australia’s most difficult 1600m showdown, on April 16 at the Royal Randwick is the main autumn aim.

Meltio ran competitively over a mile in her three-year-old season when fourth behind More Joyous in the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) in 2009 on a bog track and then beaten narrowly next start by Irish Lights in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m).

Ryan could also head overseas with Melito depending on what the season produces with the Group 1 Queen Anne Stakes (1609) at England’s Royal Ascot Racecourse in June a possibility.

Nominations for the 2011 Chipping Norton Stakes close on Monday February 28 before the release of the final field of acceptors on Wednesday March 2.

Stay tuned to Races.com.au for the latest autumn carnival race fields, previews and betting tips and for all your betting needs we highly recommend the Tabcorp-owned and trusted bookmaker Luxbet.

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