Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
Last-start Queensland Guineas winner Torio’s Quest will resume for the season at Rosehill this Saturday, the $200,000 Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes (1300m) kicking off the Wyong galloper’s 2011 Cox Plate campaign.
Prepared by Brett Partelle, Oratorio four-year-old Torio’s Quest was one of 20 exciting nominations for the 2011 Theo Marks Stakes this weekend.
The gelding emerged as one of the most promising three-year-olds of the season back in the summer with wins in the Wyong Magic Millions Stakes and Magic Millions 3YO Guineas on the Gold Coast.
Returning for an autumn – winter campaign, Torio’s Quest finished out of the money for their next four starts and lost all interest with the punters.
They bounced back however and surprised many, but not Partelle, with their romping four length victory in the Group 2 Queensland Guineas (1600m) at Eagle farm back on July 11.
After winning a Gosford trial over 800 metres last month and then working well in an exhibition gallop last Friday on their home track, Partelle is eager to get Torio’s Quest back to race conditions this weekend and start preparations to get them to the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 22.
“It’s very exciting times, not only for myself but for the owners and the stable and everyone involved,” Partelle said in regards to the Sydney and Melbourne spring carnivals.
“These sorts of horses (like Torio’s Quest), they come along maybe once in a lifetime because he’s a very, very good horse, and I think he’ll justify that through the spring.
“He’s going super and that (gallop on Friday) was absolutely perfect just to top him off for what we are aiming to do.
“He’ll go to the Theo Marks and expect him to be very, very competitive.
“It’s probably just short of his best being 1300 meters but he’s on the fresh side.”
Partelle named Glen Boss as the likely jockey aboard Torio’s Quest for their first-up run at Rosehill this Saturday, despite Hugh Bowman having ridden the galloper for all of their major career victories.
“Glen Boss will probably ride him…because Hugh can’t make the weight which is a bit of a pity,” Partelle said.
Following the Theo Marks Paretelle named either the $175,000 Group 2 Shannon Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on September 24 or the $350,000 Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) on the same day at Caulfield as Torio’s Quest next-up run.
He then plans to use the $350,000 Group 1 Toorak Handicap over the mile at Caulfield Guineas Day, October 8, as the final preparatory run before tacking the richest weight-for-age race in the country, the Cox Plate 2011.
Current Cox Plate 2011 odds at Australia’s favourite bookmaker Luxbet have Torio’s Quest as a $31 outsider in markets led by Whobegotyou ($7.50), also running this Saturday at Moonee Valley in the $300,000 Group 2 Dato’ Tan Chin Nam Stakes (1600m).
Other notable Theo Marks Stakes entries this year include Grahame Begg’s Randwick Guineas Ilovethiscity who resumed with a first-up second in the Warwick Stakes; Warwick Stakes winner Pressday; and the Gai Waterhouse-trained stablemates Fast Clip, Lorne Dancer and Older Than Time.
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2011 Theo Marks Stakes Nominations
|1||BAY WINDOW||Gwenda Markwell||89|
|2||CRAFTY IRNA||Ron Quinton||84|
|3||FAST CLIP||Gai Waterhouse||98|
|4||FORETELLER (GB)||Chris Waller||103|
|6||LEVI’S CHOICE||John P Thompson||77|
|7||LONE COMMAND||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||89|
|8||LORNE DANCER||Gai Waterhouse||103|
|10||MASTER OF DESIGN||David Payne||86|
|11||OLDER THAN TIME||Gai Waterhouse||104|
|14||PRINCE BRAEMAN||Paul Perry||–|
|15||SEA LORD||David Payne||84|
|17||TORIO’S QUEST||Brett Partelle||99|
|18||TRIPLE ELEGANCE||Chris Waller||–|
|19||TRIPLE HONOUR (NZ)||Chris Waller||–|
|20||VOICE COMMANDER||Nick Olive||102|
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