Veteran hoop Jim Byrne will chase a fourth...
The inaugural running of the $7.5 million Golden Eagle race this spring could be on the cards for progressive galloper Buffalo River should he salute in Saturday’s $135,000 Silver Bowl Series Final (1600m) at Flemington.
The Michael Moroney-trained son of Noble Mission has won his last three starts and is out to continue his winning ways when stepping out over the mile for the first time on the weekend.
A US-bred import, Buffalo River has had just the two runs down under with Moroney and Saturday sees the untapped gelding make his first race appearance at his home track at Flemington on the back of those two impressive front-running victories.
Buffalo River was a reasonable buy by connections for £180,000 who have some big spring assignments in mind should the horse salute in the Silver Bowl Final.
He was originally sought out as a Group 1 $3.5 million Cox Plate (2040m) type in late October at Moonee Valley, but could also head towards the lucrative The Golden Eagle over 1500m at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday November 2.
“We thought he was a 2000m horse and we sold [shares in] him on the proviso that he might be a Cox Plate horse. You have got to have a race that you’re aiming at to put people into a horse,” Moroney told Racenet this week.
“If you look back on his form now, he was very cheap.
“He ran third at his first start behind a horse that went on and won a Group I and the second horse in the race ended up running fourth in the English Derby.
“If wins and comes through it [the Silver Bowl Final] OK, the first thing that we said to people was that he could make the race in Sydney, the four-year-old race, the Golden Eagle.
“I might send him to the farm for a while, but he’d have to win this and win well.
“We have just been taking it a race at a time, but he keeps stepping up.
“He’s a hard goer and that’s why they sold him.
[His former trainer] John Gosden was straight-up with us and said they sold him because he was pretty hard-going, he needed gelding and relaxing.
“He’s starting to relax a bit in his training and was a bit better in his last race.
“We don’t really work him with other horses because he is such a hard goer so it’s hard to get a line on him, but he is showing a lot of potential.”
The gun filly beat home her older rivals by four and a half lengths at Ascot last start in early December when becoming an elite-level winner in the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m).
She is also a confirmed The Everest horse representing The Star in the world’s richest turf race, the $14 million event running for the third time on October 19 at Royal Randwick.
For all the best spring racing odds on The Golden Eagle and The Everest 2019 head to Ladbrokes.com.au today.
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