After running second with Hot Snitzel for the past two years, trainer Gerald Ryan is hoping to go one better in the 2014 Kevin Heffernan Stakes with his progressive stallion Charlie Boy.
The Myboycharlie four-year-old is one of 15 weight-for-age hopefuls nominated for the $150,000 Group 3 Kevin Heffernan Stakes (1300m) at Sandown Racecourse on Zipping Classic Day this Saturday.
It’s a race Ryan has come close to claiming for the past two years with Hot Snitzel running second to Mid Summer Music in 2012 and then second again to subsequent Australian Champion Racehorse of the Year Lankan Rupee 12 months ago.
This weekend Ryan hopes his horse will be first past the post however as he attempts to win the race again, this time with Charlie Boy.
“I’ve run second in this race for the past two years with Hot Snitzel and run into a good one each time,” he told AAP.
“The first year it was the Stradbroke winner Mid Summer Music and last year Lankan Rupee won it.
“I’d like to win it this time with Charlie Boy.”
A four-time Group 1 performer, Charlie Boy hasn’t won a race since a first-up victory in the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1200m) at Flemington in September last year.
Having spent nearly a year on the sidelines since then from October last year to this September, he’s tracking well to break the drought.
After a disappointing resuming run when 15th in the Bobbie Lewis earlier this spring, Charlie Boy was a close second on October 4 to Famous Seamus in the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick, his only other weight-for-age run ahead of the Kevin Heffernan Stakes.
From there he was third over 1400m at the same track seven days later and then travelled to Melbourne for another good effort at Flemington on Derby Day when fourth behind Deep Field in the Group 2 TAB.Com.Au Stakes (1200m).
Ryan is hoping for more improvement again when the horse makes his Sandown debut in the Kevin Heffernan Stakes against a quality field that includes recent Flemington winner Reparations, Group 3 winner Flamberge, distance specialist Nearest To Pin and the David Hayes & Tom Dabernig-trained Fast ‘N’ Rocking.
“He came through the Flemington race in good order and after looking at the race again, I wasn’t too disappointed,” Ryan said of the November 1 run during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
“Michael Rodd rides him and I think the horse will do well at weight-for-age.”
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