Leading trainer David Hayes is confident of walking about from Saturday’s Group 2 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) with yet another title for the season, having accepted positions for talented colts Zululand and The Spitfire.
Despite a less-than-successful run for ninth in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 22nd, Hayes believes the step up to 1400 metres will suit Zululand, particularly after drawing the ideal barrier 5.
“We’ve got two Fastnet Rock colts who will be better suited over more ground, but they are right to run on Saturday” Hayes told TVN this morning.
“We had a shot at the Blue Diamond and that didn’t work, but he wasn’t disgraces and he needs the extra ground.
“He’s been set for the race all along.”
With the Group 1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) in April figuring as the ultimate goal for Zululand this preparation, Hayes said the need for race fitness in similar event is imperative, however sometimes difficult to come by.
“There are so few options for two-year-olds over 1400-metres, so you have to run races like this” he added.
Having only contested one race for seventh; the Listed Talindert Stakes (1100m) on February 15th, The Spitfire’s chances in the 2014 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes received a huge boost on Wednesday when allocated the ideal barrier 1.
Despite the less-than-convincing maiden run, Hayes is confident The Spitfire has what it takes to figure on Saturday.
“He made up good ground after getting back to last” he said.
“He needs the extra trip.”
The Group 1 Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick on April 26th has been underlined as the ultimate goal for the in-experienced two-year-old this preparation, who Hayes believes is shaping as a talented miler.
Zululand is currently featuring as outright fourth favourite for the 2014 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes this weekend, at a quote of $7.50, while The Spitfire can be taken at the generous price of $20.
So-far unbeaten gelding Marcado is the resounding $3.70 favourite from Awesome Rock ($4.60) and Boomwaa ($4.80).
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