Le Romain is Epsom Handicap 2016 bound this Sydney Spring Racing Carnival with Newcastle trainer Kris Lees confirming plans to head towards the mile classic winner with his Randwick Guineas winner.
Lees has enjoyed two Group 1 wins for the season with Lucia Valentina taking out the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) during April’s ‘The Championships’ after younger stablemate Le Romain won the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) in March.
A three-year-old son of Hard Spun, Le Romain has to date won three of his eight starts.
His latest run saw him fail to score back-to-back Group 1s when he didn’t go the distance crossing a mid-field seventh behind Tarzino in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m) on March 19.
He was sent out for a spell immediately after and is preparing to come back for a Sydney Spring Racing Carnival bid.
The talented gelding will be kept to a mile this coming campaign and Lees this week named the $1 million Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Royal Randwick on October 1 as one of the youngster’s main aims.
His first-up run will occur on the same day Lucia Valentina also comes back to the track at Randwick on August 20.
The $4 million earning mare contests the $250,000 Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) ahead of a Melbourne bid targeting the Cox Plate and possibly the revamped Emirates Stakes at Flemington on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Le Romain meanwhile is being aimed at a resuming run on Warwick Stakes Day in the $125,000 Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m).
After the Epsom Handicap, Lees also plans to send Le Romain south to Melbourne where he will look at the $400,000 Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield Racecourse on October 8.
Lees chases a third Group 1 win for the season on Saturday at Eagle Farm in Brisbane with two runners in the $500,000 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m).
He saddles-up the second favourite Danish Twist ($5.50) from the inside alley with Hugh Bowman aboard as well as drifting $51 roughie Onemorezeta from gate 15.
The Ciaron Maher-trained Azkadellia leads Tattersall’s Tiara betting at Ladbrokes.com.au despite her last start 10th in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap at the same track and distance on June 11.
Dane Shadow four-year-old Danish Twist is out to extend her winning streak to five on the trot after great success in NSW this campaign.
Two back she beat home stablemate Onemorezeta by 1.5 lengths in the Group 3 Dark Jewel Classic (1400m) at Scone before winning Randwick’s Listed June Stakes (1100m) two weeks ago.
Another four-year-old, Onemorezeta backed up from her Dark Jewel Classic running in the Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes (1400m) on Stradbroke Day.
She jumped as a $41 outsider from barrier 11 of 13 and finished only 2.2 lengths away fourth to Cradle Me.
Despite that credible form she’s a roughie’s hope for the Tiara while the top three out of the Dane Ripper – Cradle Me ($8), Artistry ($14) and Jessy Belle ($26) – are far more dominant for the Group 1.
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