Sydney’s Gai Waterhouse is looking forward to the feature races in Sydney on Saturday’s Expressway Stakes Day including the 2015 Widden Stakes where she will saddle-up a top chance in Giulietta.
The promising daughter of Snitzel is one of 15 two-year-old fillies nominated for this weekend’s $150,000 Group 3 Widden Stakes (1100m) that has produced a number of top mares over the years.
Having also nominated for the unraced English and her Randwick winner from the spring Pierrette, Waterhouse seems most excited about the Widden Stakes and Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival prospects of Giulietta.
The filly enjoyed a trial win in mid-December at Randwick before her debut at Rosehill Gardens, where she returns on Saturday, in the $85,000 TAB Place Multi Plate (1100m).
She won that impressively by two and a half lengths on January 3, an effort Waterhouse hopes she can emulate in black-type company on Saturday.
“And she has come on from that (her debut win),” Waterhouse told The Daily Telegraph this week.
Waterhouse was also quick to make comparisons between Giulietta and a proven stable star, fellow daughter of Snitzel Sweet Idea.
Four-year-old Sweet Idea has won seven of her 18 starts and is a four-time Group 1 placegetter including in the Myer Classic from November 1 when second to Bonaria at Flemington.
“She reminds me of Sweet Idea, another Snitzel filly,” the Hall of Fame trainer said.
“They’ve both got that big, strong backside that gives them a lot of power.”
Another notable Widden Stakes entry is the Gerald Ryan-trained Fireworks who is also by Snitzel.
She has had two runs and so is third-up here looking to break her maiden status after finishing in the money in her other starts so far.
On debut at Gosford in late December Fireworks was runner-up over 1000m behind New Wings before her third to Holler last time out on a Firm (2) at Randwick on January 17.
“She wasn’t beaten far by Holler the other day and has done well since,” Ryan said.
“She can catch some of the Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper types just short of peak fitness.”
The Widden Stakes along with the $150,000 Group 3 Canonbury Stakes (1100m), which attracted only seven nominees, serve as lead-up races to the autumn’s premier two-year-old races.
First is the $1 million Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield Racecourse in Melbourne on February 28 followed by the world’s richest race for two-year-olds, Sydney’s $3.5 million Group 1 Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on March 21.
Futures Golden Slipper Stakes odds are out now at Ladbrokes.com.au with the John O’Shea-trained Rosehill winner Ottoman ($8) leading the markets.
Giulietta is also in the top half of all-in betting at a quote of $17 that will shorten should she come out and win the Widden Stakes this weekend.
Stay tuned to Races.com.au for the Widden Stakes 2015 final field and barrier draw out on Wednesday.
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