By Ray Hickson
Gerald Ryan is mirroring the timing of Golden Rose winner Trapeze Artist’s spring preparation by aiming at a Group 1 third-up.
But what’s different this time around is Ryan says he hasn’t had to battle to get the colt fit for his first-up run in the Group 2 $200,000 Expressway Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Trapeze Artist’s spring looked in disarray when he was unplaced in his first two spring starts, though Ryan always defended him, before his booming Group 1 win in the Golden Rose.
Among all the hype around Winx’s barrier trial return last week it’s easy to forget Trapeze Artist won the 900m gallop and Ryan was rapt with what he saw.
“I thought he would go there and trial well but I didn’t think he’d trial that well,’’ Ryan said.
“And he trialled without his blinkers on too.
Trapeze Artist beats a classy field, including Winx, in his January 22 trial at Rosehill
“By starting now I can do the same program as the spring, go three weeks to the Hobartville then two weeks to the Randwick Guineas.
“Plus next week he’d get 60kg against three-year-olds and this is 1200m on his home track.’’
Trapeze Artist spent 22 days in the paddock and to Ryan’s eye he’s come back a much better prepared horse in 2018.
The trainer said he fears another three-year-old in the Expressway, the Bjorn Baker-trained Addictive Nature, and expects to be in the finish.
TAB opened Trapeze Artist on the third line of betting at $4.40 for Saturday’s race behind Global Glamour ($3.00) and Addictive Nature ($3.40).
“He appears to have come up all right, his trial was good but it’s a bit hard to get a line on his work because he’s not a flash worker,’’ he said.
“He’ll run well and will improve off it.’’
Ryan is setting unraced filly Adamina for The Championships and regardless of the result in the Group 3 $150,000 Widden Stakes (1100m) on Saturday she’s not headed to the Golden Slipper.
It’s the Group 2 $600,000 Percy Sykes Stakes (1200m) on April 14 that he has in his sights.
Adamina, by Snitzel, has had the one public trial on January 22 and has shown Ryan more than enough to warrant kicking off now.
“She’s a nice filly that has come a long way quickly,’’ he said.
“She’s had two jump outs and one trial and she did everything right in the trial so I thought I’d race her, it’s on her home track against fillies.’’
Meanwhile, the once maligned Star Of Monsoon aims to remain unbeaten as a gelding in the Schweppes Shooting Star (1250m) at Canterbury on Friday night.
Back-to-back wins at Gosford, jumping from a maiden first-up to a Class 3, have shaken off the non-winner tag and Ryan said there’s no reason he can’t keep up the good work now he’s got that winning feeling.
“The only difference you notice in the horse since we gelded him is on race day,’’ he said.
“He was stakes placed early and that’s why I left him a colt so long. I don’t have any reservations about him, especially he way he worked last Friday morning and he will go very well.’’
He finished off his latest Gosford win in a respectable 11.72 (Punters Intel) and Ryan said he’s now convinced the horse is more a sprinter than a miler.
Here’s some extra interesting information coming out of the Ryan stable:
- Forbidden Kisses, who runs in race 3 at Canterbury, has been confirmed in foal to Rich Enuff.
- Top colt Menari will trial later in February ahead of a return in the Group 1 Galaxy (1100m) on March 24, though he could resume a couple of weeks earlier in the Challenge Stakes.
- Everest runner Deploy will trial at Rosehill on Monday and is likely to resume in the Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) on February 17.
- Legend Of Condor will also trial on Monday with the Pierro Plate his first-up run while Sweet Ava will reappear later in February on her way to the Slipper.