Gai Waterhouse’s Vancouver is one of 10 two-year-olds set to tackle the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill this Saturday.
The race is considered a key lead-up race to the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) on March 21 and was won last year by Mossfun before the filly went on to win the $3.5 million feature race.
Vancouver shares the top spot with Ottoman in the Golden Slipper futures betting at Ladbrokes.com.au, both paying lucrative odds of $7 to win the world’s richest juvenile race.
The two-year-old colt remains unbeaten after winning the Listed Thoroughbred Breeders’ Plate (1000m) on debut back in October. Following a three month spell, he resumed in the Group 3 Canonbury Stakes (1100m) on January 31.
Vancouver couldn’t muster the necessary early speed and was second last at the turn, though only three lengths off the leaders. The colt pulled four wide on the straightening and started to wind up from the 300 metres. He hit the front with 100 metres to go, ducked off the track but still won three-quarters of a length clear of Outreach.
Tommy Berry rode the colt in the Canonbury Stakes and believes his fitness has improved tenfold since then, making him a real threat for Saturday.
“It’s been well documented he’s not a great track-worker but he gets the job done on race-day,” Berry told TVN on Tuesday morning.
“He’s definitely much fitter, definitely.
“He stamps himself this horse – he’s an awesome looking colt and he looks like he can run as well.”
Vancouver is one of ten promising juveniles nominated for the 2015 Silver Slipper Stakes, including Group 3 BJ McLachlan Stakes (1200m) winner Mishani Honcho and Godolphin’s Ottoman, who won on debut back in October.
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