Wyong trainer Kristen Buchanan is hoping for a good barrier in Saturday’s 2015 Winter Stakes at Rosehill Gardens for her gutsy mare Two Blue who is out to turn the tables on a gun galloper from the Godolphin stable.
Sydney’s $100,000 Listed Winter Stakes (1400m) headlines the racing action this weekend and 15 early entries were taken on Monday for the quality handicap.
Among those are the two horses that ran the quinella in the Listed Civic Stakes (1350m) on a Heavy (8) Rosehill track on July 4, the John O’Shea-trained Haussmann nudging out Buchanan’s Dubelo six-year-old Two Blue by a neck.
Before the Civic Stakes Two Blue came off three other runs at Rosehill this time in including a 1200m win in the wet on June 27, form Buchanan is hoping she can return to but in Black Type company for her rematch with Haussmann on Saturday.
She is also hoping for a better barrier than the wide gate 11 of 12 Two Blue had to jump from last time out when she looks to turn the tables on O’Shea’s five-year-old Commands gelding.
The mare is one of only 15 horses Buchanan has in work at her Wyong stables and a victory over a galloper from one of not only Australia’s but the world’s biggest stables would be a big boost for her and Two Blue’s future value as a broodmare.
“It is very important for her to get black type,” Buchanan told AAP.
“Her second in the Civic Stakes helps but it would be lovely to have a stakes win beside her name.
“There is no talk of her going to stud just yet and the plan is to race her on as a seven-year-old.
“I own 20 per cent of her and she is raced on lease which has another 12 months to go so the plan is to continue.”
Haussmann ran down Two Blue in the Civic Stakes to win his first stakes race but with an extra 50m, a firmer track, more speed in the race and better gate this weekend there’s a strong chance the mare could come out on top.
“She doesn’t have to lead but she had a wide barrier last time so we’re hoping for a better one on Saturday,” Buchanan said.
“There seems to be a bit more speed among the horses nominated this time so that could change the dynamics of the race.”
In the Civic Stakes Two Blue had in-form apprentice Winona Costin in the saddle, and while Buchanan was full of praise for the young rider, her mare’s regular hoop Paul King is back in the saddle this weekend.
“Winona did nothing wrong and rode him really well but Paul is my stable jockey and he was riding in Brisbane when Two Blue raced,” Buchanan said.
Other notable Winter Stakes nominations this season include Peter Moody’s four-year-old Sebring mare Noela’s Choice who saluted over the Randwick mile in the wet last Saturday, the Joe Pride-trained evergreen veteran See The World coming off a Civic Stakes third and four for Chris Waller including Rugged Cross.
The final field and barriers are out on Wednesday and will be published right here at Races.com.au so stay tuned.
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