By Ray Hickson
Paret flop puzzles Waller
It’s back to the drawing board for Paret after his shock first-up failure at Randwick on Saturday but trainer Chris Waller is confident there’s plenty of time to get back on track.
Paret finished at the tail of a five horse field behind unbeaten stablemate D’Argento and Waller said he wanted more time to dissect the race to work out what happened.
“The only one to make any ground was D’Argento. Maybe he’s overcome a track bias or overcome sectionals,’’ Waller said.
What did you make of Paret's effort at Randwick on Saturday?
“There’s plenty of thought to go in (with Paret), hence the reason for starting off early.
“We can take him back home and work out what we do with him to get back to the level required but he will be going up in distance not back in distance.’’
Paret did run the third fastest last 600m (33.66 Punters Intel) but the winner D’Argento clocked an exciting 33.05 and almost broke 11 seconds for his last 200m (11.08).
Waller said he’ll now give D’Argento a gap between runs with the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) on February 24 his likely next run.
“It’s good to see him return like this and he did everything we want to see a colt resuming do,’’ Waller said.
Flighty Flow Floors TAB
Flow had the honour of the shortest priced favourite, and biggest losing result for TAB, at Randwick and there wasn’t a moment’s worry once the Godolphin gelding made it onto the course.
The four-year-old, who kicked a steward at Rosehill earlier in the preparation, took quite a bit of time to allow Hugh Bowman on his back and was accompanied by a pony to the starting gates.
From there it was smooth sailing as he cruised to an easy win in the Optus Systems Pty Ltd Handicap (1400m).
TAB’s Gerard Middleton said Flow held about 80 per cent of the money on the race as he firmed from $2.25 into $1.70.
Easy as you like, Flow gives Hugh Bowman a treble at Randwick pic.twitter.com/QprQm2vurM
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) January 20, 2018
Trainer James Cummings said Flow worked better than any other Godolphin horse this week so the result, despite his short price, was fully expected.
“He’s built towards that all preparation so it is satisfying to see how fourth-up we have him back to that level,’’ Cummings said.
“The horse is now ready to go on with it I would like to think and while he is capable of running a mile the change up in distance did the trick.’’
Meanwhile, Cummings said Godolphin’s number one galloper Hartnell is likely to resume in the Group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400m) in Melbourne next month in preference to another clash with Winx in the Apollo Stakes.
Hartnell won the PB Lawrence Stakes first-up in the spring and hasn’t raced since finishing down the track in the Melbourne Cup.
“He looks good. He has to be placed right and in races he can be competitive,’’ Cummings said.
“There’s a younger generation of WFA horses coming through so we’re not getting carried away.’’
Not Your Normal Redzel
Super sprinter Redzel won’t be wearing his blinkers when he takes on Winx, Ace High and company in a star studded trial at Rosehill on Monday morning.
And while co-trainer Paul Snowden expects the inaugural Everest winner will probably win the 900m gallop he’s not concerned with the result as he’ll be having a more serious second trial in a couple of weeks.
“It’s just a fitness thing, the same as most of that field. He’s prepped up like any other normal preparation,’’ Snowden said.
But when he says normal he means normal for Redzel, not other horses. He describes the five-year-old as quite abnormal.
“It’s different with him, you don’t have to prepare him like a normal horse,’’ he said.
“He runs every four to six weeks, a lot of them don’t do that. When you work solid and you race even harder their form tapers off the further you get into a preparation when you run every fortnight.
“He needs time to get back together and go again.’’
Grey Flash On Target
Chautauqua returns to the Rosehill stables of Team Hawkes on Monday week as he chases an unprecedented fourth straight TJ Smith Stakes in April.
The ‘grey flash’ raced well without luck in the spring, running fourth in The Everest, and Michael Hawkes said he’ll enjoy pre-training for one more week.
“He looks great, he’s ticking over well,’’ Hawkes said.
“There’s no kick off point yet – we’re obviously heading towards a fourth TJ. There’s no reason why he can’t do it.
“Last prep was a bit up and down, nothing really went right but that’s not an excuse. He was running good races.’’
Last year’s Randwick Guineas winner Inference has just returned to the stable and Hawkes said they’re hoping he can pick up a big handicap race in the autumn.
The four-year-old’s spring came to an end after beating a couple home in the Caulfield Cup.
“He’s a class horse and he’s well on his way. He’s more a handicap horse than a WFA horse but we’ll see where he goes this time in,’’ Hawkes said.
“It’s about getting him back and back in the winner’s circle.’’
Duck Pulls Up Stumps
Jockey Paul King has called time on his riding career with Saturday's Newcastle meeting his last, though he has left the door ajar for a return.
The 49-year-old, who won six Group 1s in the saddle and in many countries around the world, is taking a break to take up a consultant job with Hong Kong owned company Orbis Bloodstock.
"It's been a good career, I've had my falls and injuries like everyone in this industry but it's been a wonderful thing to be part of,'' King said on Sky Thoroughbred Central.
What Else You Missed
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Estijaab in Slipper frame - story here