Murwillumbah trainer Matthew Dunn is looking...
Caulfield’s Stuart Webb is plotting an autumn path into the 2017 Australian Guineas with his promising Wanted colt Wazzenme.
The three-year-old has just the one win from eight starts to date, but on Monday was one of 120 hopefuls nominated for the $750,000 Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) to run at Flemington Racecourse on March 4.
The colt’s win came on debut in the wet at Bendigo in June last year and he showed promise over the spring with runs including his third in the Group 3 HDF McNeil (1200m) and close fourth beaten under two lengths in the Group 2 Danehill Stakes (1200m).
Webb was impressed in late September when Wazzenme ran only a half-length back for third to Sacred Elixir in the Group 3 Caulfield Guineas (1400m) from a wide barrier 13 of 14 draw.
Things went amiss next time out however when the horse failed to finish better than 11th to Divine Prophet in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m).
Still with only four and a half-lengths between Wazzenme and the winner, Webb is going to give the horse another chance in Group 1 company against his own age this Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival.
The galloper is down to resume in the $150,000 Group 3 Manfred Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 4 with Webb’s eye on the Australian Guineas four weeks later and had an easy jumpout at the track this week.
“He was good, very lazy. He ran second in his trial to a nice horse of Ciaron’s [Sheriff John Stone],” Webb said of the hit-out to Racing Victoria.
“He’ll probably go Saturday-week to the Manfred Stakes at Caulfield, but I’d have thought he’ll need the run.
“You have to push him to go out of the box, and push him to run even time.
“But that attitude took him a fair way last time, and that was probably why he was 50-1 when he won at Bendigo last preparation.
“He only does what he has to, but race day, he switches on.”
Also running first-up in the Manfred Stakes Saturday week for Webb and bound for the Australian Guineas field is his Thousand Guineas Prelude winning filly Legless Veuve.
Like Wazzenme, Legless Veuve showed enormous early spring potential including her Group 2 success over La Luna Rossa on September 24.
She too however didn’t live up to that potential come her major target and ran dead last (14th) behind the Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained Global Glamour in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m).
Webb is keen to give the filly a light autumn and believes she’ll be reaching her peak potential as a mare next time in.
“Legless Veuve, I keep looking at her and thinking, ‘You’ll be such a lovely four-year-old’,” he said.
“So if we keep her to fewer than four races, she turns four as a Group 2-winning mare that’s had eight or nine starts, that’ll be ideal for her.
“Wazzenme’s a tough little colt; he can have a couple more [than her].”
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