A field of 17 have accepted for the Group One Coolmore Classic at Rosehill this Saturday, but perhaps it was a mare that didn’t accept which held the most interest pre close-off. Red Tracer was nominated for the race but was not paid up for and she’ll miss the Coolmore, a race in which she ran second to Appearance – by the barest of margins – in last year’s edition.
Red Tracer’s trainer, Chris Waller, is not without his chances though and will line up with three runners. Catkins and Royal Descent have drawn wide in barriers 14 and 13 respectively and with the non-acceptance of Red Tracer, both will carry top weight of 58kg. Catkins is a model of consistency with ten wins and six placings from 19 career starts. She’s won four from her last eight and hasn’t finished back further than third in those runs – one of those being a close second to Red Tracer in last year’s Group One Myer Classic. She is looking for three straight wins, Hugh Bowman is two from two and she is a three-time winner at Rosehill from seven attempts. Royal Descent comes into the race second-up from a spell where she’s won once and been placed her other time when second-up. She’s won four from 13 and was a 1.9L fifth in the Caulfield Cup in the spring. Arinosa, the third of the Waller runners, has been a bit off the boil of late with two unplaced runs in Melbourne. In fact she has only won three times from 17 attempts going the Melbourne way, as opposed to six from 15 in the Sydney direction. She is two from three at Rosehill and an improved effort wouldn’t surprise.
Gai Waterhouse has won the Coolmore three times in her career with Tuesday Joy, Shamehka and Bollinger, and this year she’ll aim to take it out with Sweet Idea. The three-year-old filly has only missed the placings once in her ten career starts, and that was last start, which Waterhouse puts down to the “Warwick Farm factor”.
Real Surreal won three of her first four career starts including a victory in the 2YO Magic Millions over Sweet Idea. Since that campaign she’s had a year off and goes into this race third-up from a spell and she’ll be ready to fire for the in-form Team Hawkes.
A Time for Julia is two wins and a second from her three runs this prep, and that second was to Red Tracer on a wet track. Last start, trainer Peter Moody thought she wouldn’t be suited by the race conditions with her main aim being this week’s Coolmore. Alas she won, and Glen Boss goes on board.
Kris Lees has two in the race, those being Sharnee Rose and three-year-old filly Lucia Valentina. Both did not begin their careers with Lees but under the guidance of the Newcastle trainer, Sharnee Rose has won two Group Three races including a Golden Pendant (at bolters odds) over Red Tracer. Lucia Valentina is having her second Aussie start, and seventh in total.
Steps In Time was a 0.1L second to Catkins when first-up from a spell, and she goes into this race fresh from a 4L trial win at Warwick Farm on the 10th March. She’s run fourth and eighth in this race the past two years. Dear Demi – already a Group One winner – goes into the Coolmore second-up, where she’s two from four. Bonaria is aiming for three in a row while Fire Up Fifi is third-up from a spell but is yet to really capture her hot form of last spring. And just to make things a little harder if you’re doing your form, Hana’s Goal comes over from Japan with Craig Williams to ride. The mare is five wins from 19 career starts.
Good luck if you’re having a bet.