Pierro Tops George Ryder Stakes 2013 Nominations

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.


Star colt Pierro shoots for his fifth Group 1 victory in Saturday's George Ryder Stakes 2013. Photo: Steve Hart.

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

# Horse Trainer Ballot Weight Hcp. Rating
1 AERONAUTICAL Lionel Cohen 16= 59kg 98
2 CENTENNIAL PARK (NZ) David Payne 14= 59kg 101
3 DANLEIGH Chris Waller 8= 59kg 111
4 FONTELINA Anthony Cummings 16= 59kg 98
5 HAPPY TRAILS Paul Beshara 8= 59kg 111
6 KING MUFHASA (NZ) Bruce Wallace 1= 59kg 116
7 LAMASERY David Vandyke 12 59kg 107
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
16 PIERRO Gai Waterhouse 1= 56.5kg 116
17 REBEL DANE Gary Portelli 14= 56.5kg 101