Rosehill trainer Gerald Ryan may be accepting for his Champagne Stakes 2012 nominee Flying Snitzel but he remains level headed about their chances of defeating the sure to be odds on favourite Pierro.
Gai Waterhouse’s undefeated Lonhro colt Pierro will look to complete the 2YO Triple Crown with a win in the $400,000 Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick’s Sydney Cup Day on Saturday having already taken out both the Golden Slipper and Inglis Sires Produce Stakes.
While there looks to be little stopping them from securing the grand slam, Ryan is hoping that his Snitzel filly Flying Snitzel can at least bring some credible competition to the table.
Progressing through the ranks well this time in Flying Snitzel ran a good first-up fifth to Jade Marauder in the Group 3 Sweet Embrace Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on March 17 before her close third to Ichihara in the Group 2 Magic Night Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill a fortnight later.
Last start she put half a length on fellow Champagne Stakes entry and subsequent Listed Fernill Handicap winner at Randwick from last Saturday Dear Demi to win the Group 3 The Schweppervescence (1400m) on Golden Slipper Day.
The Clarry Conners-trained Dear Demi will be ridden by flying young Kiwi hoop James McDonald for the third time on the trot in the Champagne on Saturday, while Flying Snitzel will have Glyn Schofield aboard replacing Hugh Bowman.
Bowman has already committed himself to ride the other Waterhouse-trained youngster in the Champagne Stakes, Sires Produce fourth placed Raceway.
Ryan knows what it’s like to run second to Pierro having prepared brave Golden Slipper runner-up Snitzerland, and while hopeful of an upset, he concedes he is likely running for a Group 1 second behind him again on Saturday.
He also knows that Dear Demi and McDonald are in form and will also take some beating.
“Flying Snitzel has earned a chance at the Group One but the other two will be hard to beat,” he said.
“She’s fit and well and hopefully the track is not too wet for her.”
As for the mile which they all see for the first time, Ryan believes that from what she has shown him so far and despite her breeding being out of 2006 OakleighPlate winner Snitzel – also prepared by Ryan – Flying Snitzel will make the distance.
“She has always given me the impression she will run out a strong 1600 metres,” he said.
“It all boils down to the horse.
“Rick Hore-Lacy has got Snitza by Snitzel and he’s won two 2400 metre races.”
The 2012 Champagne Stakes final field and barriers will be released on Thursday and published here at Races.com.au.
Don’t miss out on the Royal Randwick Carnival’s closing race day.