Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
New Zealand filly Rising Romance may be set for a light spring but co-trainer Donna Logan has confirmed the Australian Oaks winner will be nominated for all the majors including the Cox Plate – Caulfield Cup 2014 double.
Plans are to give the Ekraar three-year-old only a few runs this coming Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival in preparation for a heavier autumn when she’ll be at her peak according to the Ruakaka-based Logan.
“We’ll be giving her a light spring and then target the autumn when she’ll really be at her peak,” she told NZ Thoroughbred Marketing.
“There’s a lot of money on offer and she’ll be a lot stronger then.”
Rising Romance has already amassed over $620,000 in career prize money having won four of her 10 starts, most notably the Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on April 19.
Putting herself right up in the first five soon after jumping that day, Rising Romance had a handy margin but faded late to eventually win the classic by one length over 2014 Melbourne Cup hope Zanbagh.
It was just her second run down under following a fourth to Lucia Valentina in the Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) run on a Heavy (8) Rosehill track where she ran on well after getting caught back.
She’s now had the three Group 1 runs, the other being her brave second when making up lots of late ground to cross two lengths off Puccini in the New Zealand Derby over the mile and a half at Ellerslie on March 1.
A genuine staying type, expat Kiwi jockey James McDonald earmarked Rising Romance for a shot at the $3 million Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 25 after riding her to Oaks success in Sydney.
Logan has confirmed she’ll be nominated for the weight-for-age Cox Plate but also hasn’t ruled out stepping her back up to the 2400m under handicap conditions for the $2.5 million Group 1 Caulfield Cup before that on October 18.
“They’re animals and not machines and things can change from day to day so we’ll just have to wait and see closer to the time,” Logan said.
The filly was spelled after her Oaks win but returned to work back home on Monday.
Bookmakers around the country already have pre-nomination Group 1 betting markets open on the spring majors.
Cox Plate odds are led by Carlton House ($9) with Rising Romance a $21 chance, while in futures Caulfield Cup betting she is the $13 favourite.
After another Aussie campaign there’s also a chance Rising Romance will make her overseas debut in December with Logan saying they would vaccinate and nominate for the Hong Kong Cup.
“As a trainer, you can’t rule out any opportunities,” Logan said.
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