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Caulfield horseman Mick Price has named the Coolmore Stud Stakes 2014 on Victoria Derby Day as the likely grand final aim for his lightly raced filly More Radiant this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival.
Held on Saturday November 1 on the opening Melbourne Cup Carnival meeting, the $500,000 Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) is one of the season’s premier three-year-old races.
Price is hoping his daughter of More Than Ready improves during her early prep and shows enough to earn a shot at the sprint classic.
More Radiant has had just the two career starts to date, both Black Type runs, but remains a maiden.
Her debut was at Flemington on March 1 where, in a blanket finish, she crossed only a long neck away third behind subsequent Golden Slipper third placegetter Bring Me The Maid in the Listed Sports 1000.
She backed up then three weeks later at Rosehill racing the other way in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m).
While her performance there was brave, More Radiant just didn’t have the speed or stamina to pick them up over the closing stages and eventually finished under two lengths away fourth to Earthquake who went on to win the Blue Diamond Stakes.
She actually beat Earthquake home in her three length Randwick barrier trial win over 727m leading up to the Reisling Stakes and so was well deserving of her step up in class.
The form then on More Radiant has certainly held during the autumn, Price hoping it continues to do so as they target the spring riches.
More Radiant is currently in pre-training at Vinery Stud in New South Wales and is set to return to Price’s care at Caulfield on Monday.
Price has tentatively penciled in the $150,000 Group 3 Quezette Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on August 16 as her resuming run.
He plans then to keep her at a sprint distance leading up to and including her Coolmore Stud Stakes run, opting to bypass a shot at the $500,000 Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) against her own kind on October 11.
“She’ll probably race towards the end of August,” Price told Racing Victoria.
“I’m thinking she’ll be kept to the short-courses up to 1200m.
“I don’t think she’s a Thousand Guineas filly so if I had an ambitious target with her it would be the Coolmore.”
Other possible spring targets for the filly could include the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on September 13, the Group 3 Champagne Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on September 26 and the $250,000 Blue Sapphire (1200m) at Caulfield on October 15.
“There are heaps of options for a filly like her,” Price said.
“She’s a Stakes placegetter so the main aim is to make her a Stakes winner.”
“I’ve got a pretty good opinion of her.”
Price is also keen to welcome back to the stable Samaready due to return to work over the next couple of weeks.
The fellow Vinery Stud-owned daughter of More Than Ready was last seen running a disappointing ninth to Spirit Of Boom in the William Reid Stakes at Moonee Valley on March 21.
A rising five-year-old, Samaready is already a dual Group 1 winner of her own having won the 2012 Blue Diamond Stakes and more recently last year’s Moir Stakes.
While retirement has been considered, at this stage it is all systems go for another season from the $1.7 million earner who is still only lightly raced with 12 starts for six wins.
“She’s about a week into pre-training and looks fantastic,” Vinery Stud General Manager Peter Orton said.
“We’ve got two-and-half months to get her organised and get her mind on the job but if she continues looking the way she looks at the moment, she’ll race on.”
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