By Ray Hickson
There’ll only be one instruction given to jockey Tom Marquand when he’s legged on board classy import Addeybb at Rosehill on Saturday and that’s don’t let him be pocketed.
Harry Eustace, travelling foreman for trainer William Haggas, says the stable’s main concern is that Addeybb is allowed to do his own thing in the Group 1 $700,000 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and if that’s the case the six-year-old will produce his best.
That doesn’t mean Addeybb will lead but given the way he performed in barrier practice at Canterbury during the week it wouldn’t be out of the queston.
“He stepped away sharply and was straight into stride and there was a bit of zip about him,’’ Eustace said.
“We’d look to be positive enough. We won’t be dropping him out, we want to be within striking distance.
“He’s a very strong traveller, he’s won Group races over a mile, when he’s won he’s been the last one off the bridle. We’d be quite keen that he doesn’t get stuck away in a pocket.’’
Addeybb brings plenty of world class form into the Ranvet and form that Eustace says should stack up anywhere on the planet.
The gelding was far too good for Magic Wand, Mackinnon Stakes winner and runner-up in the Hong Kong Cup, in a 2004m event at Ascot in June and hasn’t raced since chasing home Magical in the Group 1 Champion Stakes (2012m) at the same track in October.
— The Championships (@ChampionshipsRR) March 3, 2020
A year ago UK import He's Eminent ran second to Avilius in the Ranvet and his form upon arrival was considerably inferior to the Haggas charge.
Eustace said Addeybb, along with stablemate Young Rascal, has enjoyed the surrounds at Canterbury and both horses are tracking well for their ‘grand finals’ on Day 2 of The Star Championships.
Addeybb's primary goal is the Group 1 $4m Longines Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick.
“I feel like these races have come at a good time with their main aims being the 11th of April but they aren’t just there for the run,’’ he said.
“If this was Addeybb’s target race an extra week would have been great but as for quality of form I’d have to side with him.’’
Young Rascal’s target is the Group 1 $2m Schweppes Sydney Cup (3200m) and aside from some small muscle issues prior to arriving his preparation for the Group 3 $160,000 Iron Jack Manion Cup (2400m) has been trouble free.
The five-year-old has won five of his 10 starts and Marquand was on board two starts ago when winning a Listed race over 2413m on synthetic ground at Kempton.
The visiting jockey rode Young Rascal in his major piece of work last Saturday, alongside Addeybb, and the expectation is that he will also press forward to a degree from his wide alley.
“He wants to get out and not sacrifice too many lengths,’’ Eustace said.
“He’s quite one paced and is a real running track sort of horse.
“He will travel well, it’s just whether at the business end we are not sure he has the turn of foot. But this isn’t the top level.
“I think we’ll see a big improvement between the two runs.’’
Eustace is quick to point out regarding Young Rascal’s last run in the Hong Kong Vase that the gelding didn’t jump the best and that put him out of play.
Addeybb opened favourite with TAB at $2.80 in the Ranvet while Young Rascal was second favourite at $5 on Wednesday.
Addeybb (@keagz88), outside, and Young Rascal (@TomMarquand) gallop at Canterbury. Both @WilliamHaggas horses expected to race @rosehillgardens on Saturday week. @tabcomau @7horseracing pic.twitter.com/sc5btBe4Rg
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) March 13, 2020