Rival Sydney trainer Gerald Ryan has declared Gai Waterhouse’s smart filly Driefontein as the forgotten horse in this year’s San Domenico Stakes 2012, a race Ryan hopes to win with his Golden Slipper runner-up Snitzerland.
Resuming after a four and a half month spell, Snitzel filly Snitzerland is currently the $2.80 second elect behind Black Caviar’s boom half-brother All Too Hard ($1.75) to win the $125,000 Group 3 San Domenico Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens this Saturday.
Occupying the third line of San Domenico Stakes betting at bookmaker.com.au is then Driefontein, the daughter of Fastnet Rock one to watch according to Ryan.
“I think Driefontein is the forgotten horse in the race personally,” Ryan said.
“She’s got great form.”
Driefontein hit the headlines winning her opening four career starts during the summer, including the Gold Coast Magic Millions 2YO Classic upon protest, before bumming out in the $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) where she finished three and a half lengths away sixth to her ace stablemate Pierro.
Last seen crossing a long neck away second in the Listed Keith McKay (1200m) in the wet at Randwick in late April, Driefontein resumes on Saturday ahead of a hopefully successful Sydney Spring Racing Carnival campaign.
Ryan meanwhile is still happy with the fitness of Snitzerland who comes off a winning trial over 900m at the track at the start of the month.
“She has done well since her trial and it has brought her on,” Ryan said.
“She’s not screwed right down for this but she will still run well.
“She’s as forward as she was when she won first-up at Mornington last preparation.”
As for the odds-on favourite All Too Hard, connections are confident the million dollar Casino Prince colt will return better than ever as a three-year-old after a successful juvenile campaign.
After winning their opening three on the trot, including back-to-back Group 2 features, All Too Hard was last seen running second to Pierro in the Group 1 Inglis Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) and will be hard to beat first-up over the 1100m on Saturday even with the 59kg topweight.
“It’s a small field, a compact field and probably field size had a little bit to do with it,” co-trainer Michael Hawkes said when explaining the decision to run All Too Hard in the Sam Domenico as opposed to the $100,000 Listed Starlight Stakes (1100m) against the older horses at the same meeting.
“But we’ve shown in the past that we are not afraid to take on the older horses with a quality three-year-old.
“He’s got his share of weight with 59 kilograms but he’s a big, strong colt and he’ll be able to carry it.”
Rounding out the 2012 San Domenico Stakes field and markets are then Anthony Cummings’ promising Fastnet Rock colt Ninth Legion ($17), the John O’Shea-trained Don’t Blink ($51) and $401 roughie Matavai from the Wyong stables of Norman Rogers.
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