Stephen Farley’s Stradbroke Handicap winner Sincero is set to make their four-year-old debut at Randwick this Saturday in the $125,000 Group 3 Tramway Handicap (1400m), kicking off a spring carnival campaign targeting the time-honoured Cox Plate 2011.
Umatilla gelding Sincero emerged as one of last season’s most-followed racehorses as they posted six straight turf triumphs from November to May around the Sydney race tracks.
When stepped up to stakes company for the first time at Eagle Farm in the Group 2 QTC Cup (1300m) in early June, however, Sincero had no luck and could only manage to finish 11th behind Varenna Miss.
After being an early fancy in the markets for Queensland’s richest race, Sincero quickly drifted in the Stradbroke Handicap odds.
He proved the punters wrong, however, and in a tight battle was able to hold off Peter Snowden’s Group 1 winning mare Beaded to take out the Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) on June 11.
They are now ready to return to race conditions, following a very nice trial over 1067 metres at Randwick on August 19, and will be reunited with jockey Chris O’Brien in the Tramway Handicap on Saturday.
O’Brien rode Sincero in nine of their opening 11 career starts for eight wins before Tim Clark took over riding duties in the QTC Cp and light-weight hoop Jason Taylor got prized Stradbroke ride.
“It’s a big buzz to be on a horse like him,” O’Brien said.
“You work seven days a week trying to find one and when you find one the hardest part then is staying on it.”
Sincero has the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 22 as his main spring aim.
Currently Luxbet are paying $21 for Sincero in their Cox Plate 2011 odds, which are lead by Whobegotyou at $7.
Farley indicated a Cox Plate programme that would include, after Saturday, runs in the $350,000 Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield on September 17 and $400,000 Group 1 Caulfield Stakes (2000m) on October 8.
Having come on well since their Stradbroke success, Farley believes Sincero has every chance to win the Tramway, especially considering their commanding first-up record and that he will only continue to improve throughout his prep.
“He has improved physically again, matured a bit more,” O’Brien said of Sincero.
“He’s ticking all the boxes.
“He’s always gone well fresh.
“He’s so lightly-raced and he’s got to step out against the better ones this time.
“Whatever he does he will improve immensely on.”
The 2011 Tramway Handicap, one of the five stakes races on the Chelmsford Stakes Day card, drew 25 nominations.
Major rivals to Sincero, if accepted, include Grahame Begg’s Group 1 Flight Stakes winning mare Secret Admirer, progressive Gold Coast raider Startsmeup, Group 1 performer Thankgodyou’rehere and the Gai Waterhouse-trained Brisbane Cup winner Tullamore.
Randwick race fields for Saturday’s meeting will be out on Wednesday and published here at Races.com.au along with up-to-date odds and betting info.
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