After being outclassed against older company last start Clarry Conners’ Group 1 winning filly Dear Demi will get back to her own age group this Saturday for the Vinery Stud Stakes 2013 where she will look to return to form with her second elite level victory.
Runner-up to star colt Pierro as a juvenile in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) last Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival the now three-year-old daughter of Dehere enjoyed a super spring campaign last year finishing top four in all seven of her starts.
Her most notable efforts included a Group 2 Furious Stakes (1400m) win at Warwick Farm, her second to Commanding Jewel in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield and then her break-through elite level success in the Crown Oaks over 2500m at Flemington in November.
This season Dear Demi resumed with a third in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill after which she won the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) beating the likes of Driefontein and Longport.
She was well liked at her next start when taking on the mares in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) but despite a nice run with cover throughout and the chance to make her move in the end she could only manage to finish five lengths away 11th behind the Guy Walter-trained Appearance.
Conners will give her the chance to atone this weekend back at Rosehill however when she races in another Group 1, the $400,000 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) where she has the extreme outside barrier 15 of 15 to overcome.
Getting back up in distance should suit Dear Demi and give her an advantage over some of her rivals including the $2.80 favourite Notzita who is yet to see the 2000m.
In the latest Vinery Stud Stakes odds Dear Demi is the $5 third pick and while there are some queries about her form and fitness after the Coolmore, there is little doubt she will appreciate the drop back in class on Saturday.
One person confident Dear Demi can be forgiven for her last run and be more competitive this weekend is Hall of Fame jockey Jim Cassidy who retains the ride in the Vinery.
“On face value she was a bit disappointing last start,” Cassidy, 50, said.
“But she got back and out of her comfort zone and it was hard for horses to make up ground.
“I do (think she can bounce back), back to three-year-old fillies grade and up to the 2000 metres.
“She pulled up really well, nothing was amiss with her apart from the fact she just got out of her comfort zone.”
Dear Demi is heading towards the $550,000 Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) at Royal Randwick on April 20 and is currently leading the futures markets for the event at $4.20 over NZ Derby winner Habibi ($4.60) who makes her down under debut in the Vinery.
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