Chris Waller’s fillies dominate the nominations...
Pleased with the first-up placing at Flemington from the stable’s 2016 Epsom Handicap hope Dibayani co-trainer David Hayes is now considering a trip to Sydney for the Tramway Stakes next start for the European import.
Hall of Famer Hayes, who now trains in partnership with his son Ben and nephew Tom Dabernig, is plotting the spring path for the Shamardal seven-year-old whose main aim is the $1 million Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Royal Randwick on October 1.
Yet to win a race down under, the former Irish and Sha Tin-trained Dibayani caught the eye in his resuming run in Melbourne over the weekend when second to the Darren Weir-trained Sooboog in the Group 3 Aurie’s Star Handicap (1200m).
The option to stay in Victoria second-up in the $200,000 Group 2 Bobbie Lewis Quality (1200m) back down the Flemington straight on September 10 is there, or Hayes could send him to Sydney for the $175,000 Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) a week earlier at Royal Randwick.
“There are two ways we could do it, one is head to Sydney for the Tramway, which is a few weeks away and then the Epsom,” Hayes told Racing Victoria.
“Or I may keep him here in Melbourne and run him down the straight again in the Bobby Lewis and then go to Sydney after that.
“Either way I want the Epsom to be the third run of his campaign and to keep his runs spaced.”
During the autumn Dibayani raced in three elite level Sydney races on the trot, his best result being a second to Chris Waller’s champion mare Winx in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) over the same track / distance as the Epsom.
Hayes said that the Sydney way of racing looked to best suit Dibayani, which is why he would bypass the $500,000 Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 27.
“The Memsie would be a lovely race for him to target in Melbourne but he just gets on his wrong leg this direction and is much more effective the Sydney-way,” Hayes said on Sunday.
“Racing down the straight doesn’t pose any problems but obviously 1200m is well short of his best distance.
“I’m really pleased with how he has returned this campaign and his run (on Saturday) is proof of that.”
Lindsay Park also prepared third past the post in the Aurie’s Star Handicap trifecta this year with five-year-old Commands stallion Tashbeeh.
Hayes said the galloper could head to Adelaide second-up for the $100,000 Listed Penny Edition Stakes (1400m) at Morphettville Parks on August 20 before a return to Melbourne.
“We might look to skip him across for the Penny Edition Stakes which is on in two weeks and then he might come back to Melbourne for the remainder of his campaign,” he said.
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