By Ray Hickson
Plenty is expected of Group 1 winning colt Prince Fawaz this spring and trainer Anthony Cummings is hoping the groundwork can be laid for the coming month or so at Rosehill on Saturday.
Cummings says it’s unrealistic to be forecasting that Prince Fawaz will steam over the top of some sharp colts in the Group 2 $200,000 Sydney Markets Run To The Rose (1200m) but it is realistic to expect him to be breathing down their necks late.
On the back of his JJ Atkins Stakes win in the winter, the three-year-old is nominated for just about everything in the spring with the immediate goal the Group 1 $1m Golden Rose (1400m) in two weeks against many of his rivals on Saturday.
“I think he can run first four, I don’t think that’s out of the park, and if he could do that I’d be happy,’’ Cummings said.
“I think he will run really well but it is going to be the race shape that will determine his best chance.
“I don’t know what potential is there for speed with the make up of the field. He needs to get the right run as they all do.’’
It appears Prince Fawaz, $16 with TAB, will settle in the second half in a race mapped by many as one that lacks obvious pressure.
Prince Fawaz claims his Group 1 at Eagle Farm in June
At his only start at 1200m, on debut, Prince Fawaz was beaten two lengths in a Gosford maiden after conceding too much start before coming into his own over further.
Cummings has taken advantage of being able to gallop the colt on race day on two occasions recently and after his work with Mizzy at Randwick last Saturday left the course convinced the horse is ready to go.
“He came back and was quite bright, the trip out and the nature of the gallop was such that it woke him up and has him in the right frame of mind to go to the races,’’ he said.
Mizzy takes her place in the Group 2 $200,000 Schweppes Sheraco Stakes (1200m) on the back of a first-up win and Cummings said she will need a bit of luck but has benefited from that victory.
“She’s come out of that race and improved,’’ he said.
“She will probably have to work a little it more from that draw but the way the race shapes up I don’t think it will be anything too horrible. She should go there and be as hard to beat as last time.’’
After his runaway win in benchmark company last Saturday, Baller steps back into stakes company in the Group 2 $200,000 Tooheys 150th Birthday Theo Marks Stakes (1300m).
Cummings said Baller is now “ready to take on the world’’ with his confidence up and is expecting the four-year-old, $7.50 third favourite, to give a sight.
“He’s on song to back up. He tightened up enough off that win and goes there a fit and healthy horse and ready to run his best race,’’ he said.