Ciaron Maher’s Victorian visitor Villermont is...
After a Flemington gallop on Tuesday morning Robert Smerdon’s lightly-raced filly Shamal Wind is likely to bypass the Newmarket Handicap 2013 down the straight this Saturday and run in Adelaide two days later instead.
The three-year-old daughter of Dubai won her opening three career starts before jumping at the top of the odds for the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 23 following the early scratching of former favourite Barakey.
She failed to live up to the hype of her big Group 1 debut however when finishing seven lengths away 12th to Mrs Onassis beating home just one other runner in the Melbourne Festival of Racing feature.
Convinced she had a better run than that in her Smerdon nominated Shamal Wind for this Saturday’s $1 million Group 1 Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m).
Looking a little underdone in her Flemington trial when third over 800m however it is looking more likely that she will be saved for a run in Adelaide’s $250,000 Group 2 Euclase Stakes (1200m) on Monday.
Smerdon could still be represented in the Newmarket Handicap 2013 field however by Lone Rock who also ran third in an 800m hitout at Flemington on Tuesday morning behind dual Group 1 winning Perth galloper Luckygray and Anthony Cummings’ Group 2 Yellowglen Stakes winner Fontelina who are both also set to run in the Newmarket.
“She wasn’t there to have a tough time. She was there to have a breeze up the straight and I was satisfied with what she did,” Smerdon said.
The five-year-old Fastnet Rock mare hasn’t won a race since the Group 3 Bobbie Lewis Quality at Flemington in September of 2011, Lone Rock having resumed with a credible eighth in the Oakleigh.
The Newmarket Handicap final field and barrier draw is due for release on Wednesday with Races.com.au to publish the official list of acceptors and gates.
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