Leading Sydney trainer Chris Waller looks set to continue his great Sydney Autumn Carnival form in Queensland and has nominated seven horses for the Group 2 $300,000 A. D. Hollindale Stakes (1800m) at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Waller is dominating Sydney racing at present and saddled up three Group 1 winners over the final two Autumn Carnival days with Royal Descent in the $550,000 Patinack Farm Australian Oaks (2400m) and Sacred Falls in the $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on April 20 as well as Reliable Man winning the 1 $500,000 Santos Coffee Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick last Saturday.
Group 1 Ranvet Stakes winner Foreteller and tough weight for age performer Danleigh head Waller’s entries in the weight for age race that has attracted a total of twenty-one nominations as the Brisbane Winter Carnival gets into full; swing.
The powerful Peter Moody stable has entered top middle distance race mare Lights Of Heaven and the imported Voila Ici while John Thompson has nominated Hour Of Peril, Maules Creek and Transporter.
Schweppes Oaks winner Lights Of Heaven has hit form at the right time and comes to Queensland after scoring a commanding win in the Group 3 $125,000 Neville Sellwood Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill on April 6.
Local hope Solzhenitsyn will be heading into Saturday’s Hollindale Stakes not having raced for a month, but trainer Robert Heathcote isn’t concerned.
Heathcote has stepped up the six year old’s work and was all smiles with a ten lengths win in 1200m jump out at Doomben last Tuesday.
“He won a 1200 metre jump out at Doomben last Tuesday by 10 lengths and his time was a second and a half quicker than any of the other heats over that distance,” Heathcote said.
“The 1800 metres isn’t overly testing but my biggest concern is the actual track itself.”
Heathcote scratched Solzhenitsyn from the Group 1 $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on April 20 after the track was downgraded to a heavy 10, but the trainer is unperturbed stepping up 1800m after not racing since finishing last of twelve behind Pierro on April 6.
Solzhenitsyn had won all his eleven races on good or dead tracks and was clearly not at home on a slow 7 in the Group 1 $400,000 The Daily Telegraph George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill.
Heathcote is more concerned that big striding gelding won’t be comfortable on the tight turning Gold Coast track, saying that some horses just don’t handle it.
“I make no secret that it’s a horses-for-courses track more than any other in Queensland and we see it year after year in the Magic Millions that some horses simply don’t handle it,” Heathcote said.
Solzhenitsyn rose to Group 1 glory with a stunning win in the $400,000 David Jones Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield in the Spring following some good lead up form.
The six year old had always shown promise since arriving from New Zealand in May 2011, but put the writing on the board with an eye catching third to Moment Of Change in the Group 1 $400,000 Clamms Seafood Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield the start before.
If Solzhenitsyn races up to Heathcote’s expectation, he could then head towards the Group 1 $500,000 Doomben Cup (2000m) at Doomben two weeks later with an option of going onto the Group 1 $1m AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm on June 8.
A D Hollindale Stakes Nominations 2013
|1||BEATEN UP (GB)||Chris Waller||–|
|2||CLASS IS CLASS (IRE)||Chris Waller||–|
|4||FORETELLER (GB)||Chris Waller||–|
|5||GINGA DUDE (NZ)||Graeme Boyd||105|
|6||HOUR OF PERIL||John P Thompson||–|
|7||ILLO (GER)||Chris Waller||–|
|10||LIGHTS OF HEAVEN (NZ)||Peter G Moody||–|
|11||LUCKY LUNA||Les Kelly||96|
|12||MAULES CREEK||John P Thompson||–|
|13||MORIARTY (IRE)||Chris Waller||–|
|14||POSTE RESTANTE (NZ)||Desleigh Forster||94|
|16||SAINT ENCOSTA||John P Thompson||92|
|17||SHENZHOU STEEDS (NZ)||Michael Moroney||–|
|18||SOLZHENITSYN (NZ)||Robert Heathcote||–|
|19||STOUT HEARTED (USA)||Chris Waller||–|
|20||TRANSPORTER||John P Thompson||97|
|21||VOILA ICI (IRE)||Peter G Moody||–|