Peter Snowden may have scratched one of his chances from the Randwick Guineas 2012 in Sydney this Saturday but the ace trainer will still unleash a triple-pronged attack on the autumn feature.
Snowden made the decision to withdraw #10 Free Wheeling, a failure at both of their first-up runs this year, from the $500,000 Group 1 Turnpoint Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) after they drew poorly in barrier 15.
“I have had a talk with the team here and we are probably going to scratch Free Wheeling from the wide barrier because it is a very hot race and we don’t usually like running horses which have limited chance,” Snowden said earlier this week.
The early scratching leaves a 16-horse Randwick Guineas field for 2012, Snowden to saddle up three of the remaining contenders.
Roughie of the bunch is #2 Induna, a shame considering the Elusive Quality gelding’s ideal barrier three draw.
Paying $101 in the Randwick Guineas odds at bookmaker.com.au, Snowden knows that the mile is still going to be too short for last year’s narrow Victoria Derby runner-up to really challenge the likes of Manawanui and Mosheen.
Still, he is hoping for a good showing and to see some improvement from their first-up 11th in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) on March 3 heading towards their main autumn aim, the $1.5 million Group 1 ATC Australian Derby (2400m) at Royal Randwick on April 14.
“Induna is our Derby horse and needs to have the run going towards that race,” Snowden said.
“Induna is rated so high we have to run him in these races to get ready for the Derby.”
“Ambidexter and Galah are looking for the mile,” Snowden said.
“They are both horses with a lot of potential that need to step up.”
Ambidexter will be ridden by Joshua Parr from gate eight and they come off a solid third behind fellow Randwick Guineas hopefuls Wild And Proud, Manawanui and Moment Of Change in the Hobartville.
“Ambidexter is very well and is the sort of horse that has showed the ability to be competitive at this level,” Snowden said.
Redoute’s Choce colt Galah, meanwhile, has the third best Place Rate of the field (57.14%) and also a nice record over the mile having run third in the Group 2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) last November on the back of their narrow victory over Highly Recommend in the Group 3 Inglis Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on Derby Day.
“I thought Galah would be a Rosehill Guineas-sort of horse but has certainly come on,” Snowden said.
“When horses run in the Sandown Guineas you are limited in time getting them ready for the autumn but he has done everything right.”
Despite having run ninth in the Hobartville Stakes first-up with Tommy Berry aboard, Galah’s former jockey Kerrin McEvoy has put his hand up to jump back on.
It could prove a nice move too as Galah is unbeaten second-up so far.
“You have to forget about that run (in the Hobartville) because he got put out of business early in the race,” Snowden said.
“He wasn’t a winning hope after that but his closing sectionals were very good.”
Can one of Snowden’s trio upset their better fancied rivals on Saturday?
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