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Having come close to success with Triple Honour five years ago, ace Sydney horseman Chris Waller will vie for his maiden win in one of the true Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival classics nominating for two three-year-olds in the 2013 Randwick Guineas this weekend.
Champion galloper Triple Honour came within a nose of Weekend Hussler when second in the 2008 Randwick Guineas going on to stamp themselves as one of the greats with a Doncaster Mile victory two starts later.
This weekend at Warwick Farm Waller will be out to atone for that narrow miss with two Kiwi expats Tougher Than Ever and Sacred Falls to run in this year’s edition of the $500,000 Group 1 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m).
A total of 16 horses were nominated for the Randwick Guineas 2013 including Waller’s General Nediym colt Tougher Than Ever who was scratched from last Saturday’s Chipping Norton Stakes, won by Waller’s defending winner Shoot Out, in favour of a run this weekend.
Third in the NZ 2000 Guineas when prepared by Jason Bridgman in New Zealand, Tougher Than Ever has had two runs in Australia for Waller when a first-up fourth in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) and then second in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) in the wet on February 23 – both at Warwick Farm.
“Tougher Than Ever trialled well on Tuesday and going back to his own age group will help,” Waller said.
“Jim Cassidy will ride (in the Randwick Guineas).”
NZ 2000 Guineas winner Sacred Falls meanwhile is now also prepared in Sydney by Waller, the O’Reilly colt to run second-up in the Randwick Guineas following a fifth in the Group 2 Royal Sovereign Stakes (1200m) on February 16 in their Aussie debut which their first career loss.
Waller is yet to pencil in a Randwick Guineas jockey for Sacred Falls but is hoping their regular rider Leith Innes will be available.
“Sacred Falls had a gallop between races at Canterbury on Friday night and I’m sure he will prefer it on top of the ground,” he said.
“I’m still not certain what Leith’s commitments are in New Zealand. It’s possible he will stay there for the Oaks.”
Other notable Royal Randwick Guineas 2013 nominees then include uneaten Australian Guineas winner Ferlax, Murray Baker’s New Zealand galloper It’s A Dundeel winner of the Spring Champion Stakes last spring, last Sunday’s Canberra Guineas runner-up Ashokan and the Gary Portelli-trained Royal Sovereign Stakes champ Rebel Dane coming off a close second to Pierro in the Hobartville Stakes.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au to view the 2013 Randwick Guineas final field and barrier draw to be released on Wednesday.
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