Ballarat trainer Archie Alexander will use the Wednesday performance of his improving filly The Housemaid at Ladbrokes Park Hillside as a guide to her 2016 Thousand Guineas potential this spring.
Alexander has the daughter of 2010 Caulfield Guineas winner Anacheeva in the mix for a shot at elite level glory on October 8, nominating the up-and-comer for the $500,000 Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) at Caulfield Racecourse.
There is still plenty of work to be done between now and Caulfield Guineas Day however including a mid-week Sandown run in Wednesday’s $40,000 The Grand Hotel Frankston Handicap (1300m).
Two early scratchings from the Benchmark 54 handicap for three-year-olds sees 14 remaining hopefuls ready to line-up including The Housemaid in barrier eight.
Internationally-performed hoop Craig Williams is booked for the all-important ride, which the filly needs to win to stay on the Thousand Guineas path.
Currently The Housemaid is only rated a $31 outsider in betting at Ladbrokes.com.au, markets led by the Greg Eurell-trained son of Street Boss Urban Ruler ($4.60).
Alexander is hoping his runner proves classier than her price suggests after she enjoyed a 1400m run on the synthetic track at Pakenham on July 31.
“It’s a pretty tough race,” Alexander admitted to AAP.
“There’s 16 [before scratchings] in it and probably 10 have a real good winning chance.
“Her win last time was pretty good and we felt she deserves to take her chance.
“Normally I would have liked it to be 1400 metres, but it’s only 100 metres shorter and then we’ll be stepping her up to 1400 and a mile afterwards.
“That’s where her future lies.”
Apprentice Ben Allen rode her for the tight win last time out, which followed her third behind Artie Dee Two at Geelong over 1200nm from earlier in the month.
Her debut was at Cranbourne on May 13 over 1200m on a Soft (6) track when fourth, beaten under three lengths by the winner Peeking Duck, and Wednesday is her first run on the turf since.
Giving Alexander a bout of confidence is the current track conditions at Hillside, the course rated a Soft (7) on Tuesday afternoon, and he knows she is still in peak form despite the three week break between runs.
“She’d have to win or go close to think about the Guineas but I thought she was worth the nomination,” Alexander said of The Housemaid.
“She’s the sort of horse that can get away with a 1300 or 1400 race but I think in time a mile is her go.”
Looking further ahead he also hasn’t ruled out the potential to step the filly out even further in distance this Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival for a shot at the $1 million Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington on November 3.
“We can aim high and always come back,” he said.
“For the moment she’s done everything right and she tries really hard.
“She might not be the best filly in the race but she will always give her best.”
The Housemaid is at a current all-in quote of $67 in early Thousand Guineas odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
For the week’s best racing odds and access to the top futures Group 1 markets head to Ladbrokes.com.au now!