Recently inducted Hall Of Fame trainer Chris...
Gai Waterhouse’s glamour colt Pierro will vie for their incredible fifth Group 1 victory this Saturday in the 2013 George Ryder Stakes on Golden Slipper Day but the last start Canterbury Stakes winner will face a tough test if the nominations are anything to go by.
One of five elite level features on the Rosehill Gardens race program on the weekend, this year’s $400,000 Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) has attracted 17 nominations the favourite of which is likely to be Lonhro three-year-old Pierro.
Winner of the 2YO’s Triple Crown last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival Pierro has been in flying form this year too with back-to-back Rosehill victories to their credit most recently beating their star stablemate More Joyous in the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) on March 23.
It was a good field they defeated that day and it will be the same again this weekend for the George Ryder 2013 where Waterhouse has also nominated for her talented Artie Schiller four-year-old Laser Hawk who was third in the Australian Derby as a three-year-old last autumn.
Pierro is a dual Golden Slipper Day nominee also in the mix for the $2.25 million Group 1 The BMW (2400m) for which the final field comes out today but the George Ryder is the preferred option.
“I can’t see Pierro being beaten,” Waterhouse said.
Among the biggest threats Pierro could face in the weight-for-age George Ryder Stakes if accepted are Rob Heathcote’s Canterbury Stakes third placegetter Solzhenitsyn, Gary Portelli’s in-form California Dane colt Rebel Dane last seen finishing fourth to It’s A Dundeel in the Randwick Guineas, and dual Group 1 winning mare Secret Admirer.
The other interesting George Ryder Stakes plot this year is of course the bid of top Sydney horseman Chris Waller who is after his fourth straight victory following wins with Danleigh (2010), Rangirangdoo (2011) and Metal Bender (2012).
Waller has nominated for three horses this year with 2010 winner Danleigh, French import Reliable Man having their debut run down under, and his best chance at another George Ryder Stakes victory Shoot Out – the multiple Group 1 champ last seen winning the Chipping Norton Stakes first-up at Warwick Farm on March 9.
“I’m pleased with them and they both trialled as I hoped,” Waller said of Danleigh and Shoot Out ahead of Saturday’s run.
“It will be tough but they have shown what they can do.”
The 2013 George Ryder Stakes final field and barrier draw are due for release on Wednesday and will be published right here at Races.com.au so stay tuned.
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2013 George Ryder Stakes Nominations
Rosehill Gardens – 06/04/2013
|2||CENTENNIAL PARK (NZ)||David Payne||14=||59kg||101|
|5||HAPPY TRAILS||Paul Beshara||8=||59kg||111|
|6||KING MUFHASA (NZ)||Bruce Wallace||1=||59kg||116|
|8||LASER HAWK||Gai Waterhouse||10=||59kg||109|
|9||MANIGHAR (FR)||Peter G Moody||1=||59kg||116|
|10||RELIABLE MAN (GB)||Chris Waller||5||59kg||114|
|11||SHOOT OUT||Chris Waller||1=||59kg||116|
|12||SOLZHENITSYN (NZ)||Robert Heathcote||10=||59kg||109|
|13||VEYRON (NZ)||Linda Laing||6=||59kg||112|
|14||VOILA ICI (IRE)||Peter G Moody||13||59kg||106|
|15||SECRET ADMIRER||Grahame Begg||6=||57kg||112|
|17||REBEL DANE||Gary Portelli||14=||56.5kg||101|
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