By Ray Hickson
Trainer David Pfieffer has already shown his hand with promising filly Prophet’s Thumb by throwing her in a stakes race at her second start.
The three-year-old, a winner of two of her three starts to date, chases her first city win at Warwick Farm on Wednesday and Pfieffer said he won’t be afraid to head back to stakes level this season.
Prophet’s Thumb is the $2.30 favourite for the ANZ Bloodstock News Handicap (1200m) on the back of a dominant first-up win in late December.
“I think she’s shown us all enough that she’s probably going to get to (stakes) grade sooner or later,’’ he said.
“She deserves to have a crack in town. She was good first-up and hopefully she can go through her grades.’’
Pfieffer has pencilled in another step up in grade if Prophet’s Thumb continues on her winning way eyeing the Wilkes Quality (1100m), won last year by Siege Of Quebec, at Randwick on Australia Day.
Prophet's Thumb scores easily at Gosford on December 28
Randwick was the scene of the filly’s only defeat, in the Listed Heritage Stakes in September, but she missed the start by two lengths and was still coming on the line beaten four lengths.
When she resumed at Gosford last month Prophet’s Thumb settled back and jockey Corey Brown brought her to the outside to let her wind up.
Punters Intelligence data shows she ran a slick 33.06 for her last 600m in that 1000m race and sizzled her last 200m in 10.81, the fastest of the day for both sectionals.
Jockey Corey Brown is indisposed so Pfieffer expects replacement rider Kerrin McEvoy to settle the filly just off the pace from a favourable barrier.
“She box seated at her first start so I’d like to think she could be a little bit closer,'' he said.
“She will acquit herself well and I expect her to race well.’’
A Pfieffer quinella isn’t out of the question as he also saddles up honest sprinter Crafty Tycoon ($7).
The gelding was beaten just over a length by Connemara at Randwick on Boxing Day and has a win over the Warwick Farm 1200m to his name.
“He’s going great and he’ll race well like he always does,’’ he said.
“I’d like to think he could figure as well, hopefully they fight the finish out.’’
And Pfieffer said he wouldn’t be surprised if Xaarfoxylady handles a step up in grade after a fast-finishing second at Newcastle in the 2019 Membership Handicap (1400m).
The mare’s best form is at the 1400m and if they overdo it up front he said she will be running on.
“I thought she raced really well last start, you’ve got to be a bit conservative from the barrier and hopefully she does her best work late,’’ he said.