Ciaron Maher has confirmed plans this week to target a later Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival return with Petits Filous likely to avoid the Melbourne February sprints in favour of a first-up The Galaxy 2016 run in March.
A winner of four of her five starts to date, ultra-consistent Street Boss filly Petits Filous was a dual black-type winner in the spring before a failed 10th when beaten just under four lengths by Buffering in Moonee Valley’s Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) last start.
Maher has been gearing up for her return, but fears races like the $750,000 Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington on February 20 and Caulfield’s $500,000 Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) on Blue Diamond Stakes Day the following weekend will roll around too quickly.
Instead he could take the filly straight to Sydney for a first-up run at Rosehill Gardens on Golden Slipper Stakes Day on March 19 in the $700,000 Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m).
Maher has had just one previous The Galaxy runner without success, but hopes for better luck with Petits Filous who is out to become the first three-year-old filly since La Baraka (1998) to take out the short distance sprint.
“I just thought she needed a bit of extra time,” Maher told Racing Victoria this week.
“She’s in great order and should be ready to trial in the next 10 days or so.
“The Black Caviar Lightning and the Oakleigh Plate are probably a bit soon for her so maybe races like the Galaxy or the Sangster could be nice options.”
The $400,000 Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes (1200m) meanwhile runs at Morphettville Racecourse in Adelaide on Saturday May 7.
Open only to fillies and mares, the Robert Sangster Stakes has been dominated by four-year-olds in recent years with the last filly to beat home older rivals in the race being Rostova (2010).
Maher also expressed doubts about an autumn campaign for the injured Srikandi.
Winner of the Group 2 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) – Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) last Queensland Winter Racing Carnival, the now five-year-old daughter of Dubai hasn’t raced since the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
After a first-up second to Chautauqua in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Cox Plate Eve in October she was last seen running fifth beaten only one and a half lengths by Delectation in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on November 7.
The $2.37 million earner has been in the paddock since, but pulled up lame post-gallop at Caulfield last week putting her autumn in doubt.
“We’ve still got to do some more tests and scans on her but at this stage an autumn campaign is in doubt,” Maher said after Srikandi was found to have injured her hind leg.
“She’s comfortable but she’s still quite sore.
“As we get more information it will become clearer as to the extent of the injury but I’d say she’s going to need a decent spell and can hopefully make it back for the spring.”
To back Maher’s autumn runners at the right price sign-up now with Ladbrokes.com.au where quoting the code BETBONUS when making your first deposit will also see it matched 100% up to $500 in bonuses!