By Ray Hickson
Trainer Chris Waller dismisses classy three-year-old September Run’s Sydney record as any kind of factor as she attempts to become the second filly to win Saturday’s Group 2 $1m Arrowfield Sprint (1200m) at Royal Randwick.
September Run, $3.30 favourite with TAB on Friday, has raced four times in Sydney for a narrow maiden win at Canterbury and three unplaced runs at Randwick.
Since the latest of those she’s notched a Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes win among three Flemington wins and returns to Sydney, and her own age, after a luckless fourth in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) a month ago.
“It’s not on paper yet, it’s not fact, that she is as good in Sydney but it’s of very little concern to me,’’ Waller said.
“She scrambled in to win a maiden in Sydney and a Listed race in Brisbane. There was no mention she was a really good horse in those two wins, I think she has gone to a new level.
“She still needs to do it so I respect that.
“She was deadly up the straight but she also got beaten up the straight. The William Reid run to me suggests she’s as good around a bend, obviously the opposite way.”
Waller elected to scratch September Run from last week’s Group1 TJ Smith Stakes, won by stablemate Nature Strip, with the trainer suggesting there’s plenty of time in the future for her to reach the autumn sprint grand final.
The Group 2 Arrowfield has grown in stature since it was opened up to all three-year-olds in 2013 with Catchy (2018) the only filly to be successful to date. It was a launching pad to the TAB Everest two years ago for Classique Legend and it could well be the same for September Run.
“She’ll get her chance next year in a TJ and if she does things right she might get her chance in an Everest and other big races as well,’’ Waller said.
“The Arrowfield Sprint looks perfect for her. She’s beaten the boys and girls in the Coolmore back in the spring but she hasn’t had a lot of luck this time.”
Whether barrier one is problematic for September Run in the Arrowfield remains to be seen but Waller said it can’t be worse for her than what unfolded from gate 10 of 12 around the Valley on a dynamite on fence night.
That run, even in defeat, convinced him that the filly is on song.
“First-up she ran second to Nature Strip in the Lightning, it was a tremendous run, she was a touch disappointing in the Newmarket but bounced back in my eyes in the William Reid where she drew very wide,’’ he said.
“Had she had a good draw I think she would have been fighting out first and second prizemoney, instead she ran fourth.
“She has a good draw now, Craig Williams retains the ride and she should be very hard to beat.”
Wild Ruler runs sixth in the Galaxy at Rosehill
On the other side of the coin Wild Ruler boasts an unbeaten record at Randwick after three starts including the Group 2 Roman Consul (1200m) in the spring and his first-up Fireball win on March 6.
The colt comes off a sixth placing in the Group 1 Galaxy behind Eduardo where he settled in the second half and made some ground, co-trainer Paul Snowden is hoping James McDonald can put him closer to the speed.
“He just got back a little bit in the ruck in the Galaxy and it was pretty much you wanted to be up there near the tempo on the day,’’ Snowden told Sky Racing.
“He’s come back in good order and the dry track is a plus.”
The Snowden stable is also represented by Aim, who beat Amish Boy and Away Game on the Gold Coast at his last run in January, and Coolmore Classic placegetter Dame Giselle.