A good barrier draw will assist Champagne...
Perignon was unlucky not to contest last weekend’s Group 1 Coolmore Classic, but trainer Gerald Ryan is confident the filly will be a picture of health when she returns in Saturday’s Group 3 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens.
A Group 1 placegetter, Perignon more than stamped herself as one to watch this season when charging home to beat a talented field to the line in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) first-up on February 13th, but was unable to take her place in the Coolmore Classic when she was found to be harbouring an elevated temperature.
Underlining a race like the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) during The Championships as the likely target this time, Ryan told AAP he believes Perignon will again prove very hard to beat in the 2016 Birthday Card Stakes this weekend.
“She spiked a temperature on the morning of the Light Fingers but it was back to normal by the afternoon,” Ryan said.
“We treated her so that ruled her out of racing for a couple of weeks.
“But she hasn’t missed any work and we have options for her.
“She is entered for the Queen Of The Turf and also the Arrowfield Sprint over The Championships so we’ll just play it by ear.”
Perignon debuted to racing for fourth in the Wyong Magic Millions 2.y.o Classic (1100m) in late December 2014 before taking out the TAB Rewards Plate (1200m) at Canterbury less than two weeks later.
Placing a credible fifth in the Gold Coast Magic Millions 2.y.o Guineas (1200m) in January, the daughter of Snitzel returned to the paddock after placing seventh in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes (1200m) and second in the Group 2 Magic Night Stakes (1200m).
Resuming in spring for second in the Group 2 Furious Stakes (1200m), Perignon progressed to fifth in the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1400m) before mustering arguably a career-best performance to date to finish third in the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) on October 3rd.
The 2016 Birthday Card Stakes field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
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