Trainer Roger James has revealed that leading New Zealand mare Silent Achiever is a chance of returning to Melbourne to contest the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 8.
James told Racing Victoria that he will include Silent Achiever in the acceptances for both the Australian Cup and the Group 1 New Zealand Stakes (2000m) at Ellerslie and will compare both fields before deciding on which race to contest with the daughter of O’Reilly.
Silent Achiever has impressed James since returning from the spelling paddock and the Cambridge-based trainer is confident that the five-year-old can once again be competitive at the highest level of racing in the autumn.
“It will depend on the strength of the two races as to where we line up,” James said.
“We’re going to have the privilege of being able to compare both races before we make a decision.
“We can make the decision as early as the week of the race because I can get her over on the Wednesday.
“She’s in grand order; she’s a much better autumn mare, she’s really matured and I’m very happy with her.”
Silent Achiever won the 2012 Group 1 New Zealand Derby (2400m), but has been unable to break through for a win at the highest level of racing in Australia.
She made her Australian racing debut with a third place finish in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) during the 2012 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival and finished sixth, after being well-backed, in the Group 1 Australian Derby (2400m).
The talented mare returned to Australia and took out the Group 2 Crystal Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley during the 2012 Spring Racing Carnival before returning to Sydney for an autumn campaign, which was highlighted by a second place finish behind Fiveandahalfstar in the Group 1 The BMW (2400m).
James set her for the 2013 Group 1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) and she performed fairly in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) and Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m), but her campaign was prematurely ended after she was galloped on when finishing eighth in the Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m).
Silent Achiever is currently on the 10th line of the 2014 Australian Cup betting market that is available at Ladbrokes.com.au.
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