Local Sydney stayer Lamasery is looking to improve on their good first-up effort at Warwick Farm when they return to the track on Saturday to stake their spring carnival claims taking on a good field of rivals in the 2012 Chelmsford Stakes.
Nominated for all the spring majors from The Metropolitan and Epsom Handicap in Sydney, to the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival’s Caulfield Cup and Cox Plate, David Vandyke’s Commands six-year-old is in promising form.
They resumed after a nine and a half month break on August 25 when running an eye-catching fourth to Pinwheel in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
“He took a few days to get back on his feed but generally he pulled up better than I had hoped for,” Vandyke said.
On Saturday they are set to face a very similar field in the $175,000 Group 2 Chelmsford Stakes (1600m), the nominations for which include Warwick Stakes second and third placegetters Secret Admirer and Danleigh.
Vandyke believes Lamasery is a genuine local spring cup hopeful for 2012 with both the $2.65 million Group 1 BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) on October 20, and possibly even the $6.2 million Group 1 Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on the first Tuesday of November on the agenda.
“He will also be in the Melbourne Cup nominations when they come out but I don’t want to look too far ahead with a horse like this because of the problems he’s had,” Vandyke said.
While it is looking to be a northern-hemisphere saturated cup contingent again this year, Vandyke liked what he saw from Lamasery last spring when he competed against some of the raiders and imports when running a credible fourth to 2010 Melbourne Cup winner Americain in the Group 2 Zipping Classic (2400m) in November.
“Lamasery ran very well in Melbourne last year against Americain and Manighar so that gives him enough legitimacy as a Cups contender,” he said.
Lamasery meanwhile pays $41 to win the Caulfield Cup and will be added to the Melbourne Cup markets once nominations for the ‘race that stops a nation’ are taken this afternoon.
Other notable Chelmsford Stakes nominees include the resuming Rangirangdoo, Ginga Dude and the Peter Moody-trained Lights Of Heaven.
Eagle Farm Cup – Brisbane Cup double winning Zabeel mare Lights Of Heaven ran a luckless 11th when beaten three and a half lengths in the Warwick Stakes first-up, a performance Moody is willing to overlook heading into Saturday’s race.
“I was happy enough with Lights Of Heaven’s first-up run and she has improved since,” Moody said.
“She’s stepping up to 1600-metres which will suit her more. She’s coming along well.”
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