Terravista Will Aim to Win 2015 Newmarket Handicap First-Up

Terravista is set to have his work cut out for him after trainer Joe Pride revealed the gelding will resume in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington Racecourse on March 14.

Terravista will resume in the Newmarket Handicap on March 14 against the likes of Lankan Rupee and Chautauqua.

Terravista will resume in the Newmarket Handicap on March 14 against the likes of Lankan Rupee and Chautauqua. Photo by Steve Hart.

It is staggering to think that no horse has won the Newmarket Handicap first-up on the back of a spell since 1917 but if anyone can break the drought it has to be Terravista.

The five-year-old gelding was last seen in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) on November 8 where he delivered a spectacular win after charging in the last furlong. But more importantly, Terravista has a flawless fresh record.

“He’s four from four first-up and, honestly, he’s never looked like getting beaten first-up. He’s a super horse fresh, he really is,” Pride told RSN’s Racing Ahead.

“I didn’t want to run in him in the Lightning, I just think it’s an extra run he doesn’t need and I think he can win the Newmarket first-up.”

Terravista won the Australian Turf Club Plate (1100m) on debut in April 2013 as well as a Benchmark 70 over 1000 metres in October that year following a six month spell. Last year the gelding won the Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) first up in the autumn before going on to win the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m) in the spring following just under five months in the spelling paddock.

The Group 1 TJ Smith Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on April 4 is a possible second-up start for the equal-highest ranked sprinter in the world, who will then progress to the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m) two weeks later at the same track.

“There won’t be anything spectacular happening until he goes off to the trials, but he’s in fantastic order and I couldn’t be happier with him,” Pride said.

“He’s bulked up, when he raced down in Melbourne I think his last start he weighed in the low 540s (kilos) but he’s 560-something now.”

Terravista could resume a number of his spring rivalries in the 2015 Newmarket Handicap with both Lankan Rupee and Chautauqua also likely to tackle the $1 million sprint race.

Lankan Rupee beat Terravista in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) after the gelding found himself severely hampered at the bend. However Terravista emerged victorious over both rivals in the Darley Classic with Chautauqua a head behind in second place while Lankan Rupee was a further one length away in third.

With nine wins from 13 starts and over $1 million in total prize money, Terravista will be one to watch this autumn.

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