By Ray Hickson
He’s riding with a rare style of confidence and jockey Jason Collett is keen to keep the run going at Kensington on Saturday with a full book of rides highlighted by smart filly Tailleur.
The quietly spoken hoop has compiled a run of snaring a double or better at the past four Saturday meetings in town and in between his Randwick double on July 4 and that treble at Rosehill last weekend he earned rave reviews for his Grafton Cup winning ride on Sixties Groove.
“It’s been going well the last couple of months and last week really topped it off,’’ he said.
“It was nice to get a bit of publicity for it too and I’d like to keep the momentum going.’’
Collett, on the cusp of 50 winners for the season, is excited to have retained the ride on the unbeaten Tailleur in the De Bortoli Wines Handicap (1100m) after that heart stopping last stride first-up win two weeks ago.
The Godolphin filly posted the fastest last 600m of the meeting at Randwick, running 35.12 in the heavy ground, and the day’s best last 200m of 12.14 (Punter's Intelligence).
“That was a very good win,’’ Collett said.
“Switched had it quite easy and did skip away, and had the runs under the belt in fitness, but she showed her class.
“I always thought she would run her down. I didn’t think it would get that tight but it comes back to the fitness and the time in front the other horse had.’’
Tailleur, $1.95 with TAB, rises 2.5kg for that first-up win but Collett is quite bullish that he’s on a progressive filly who will take this step in her stride.
He is wary of how the Kensington track might play, pattern wise, and says barrier five is absolutely ideal to give him all the options he needs.
“She was very quick away last start which made things easy,’’ he said.
“I was given an open book going out there based on how she began and she began well and put herself there so that made my job easy.
“We have a nice barrier, it just depends how the track plays. They’ve been fanning wider and wider the last two meetings they’ve had so I’d probably look to be getting out.’’
Collett has been the magician who has steered the Kris Lees-trained stayer High Opinion to two wins from his last three starts and will attempt a threepeat in the Quincy Seltzer Handicap (1800m).
High Opinion had a 15 month run of outs prior to his Randwick win on May 23 and Collett just hopes Saturday’s race pans out like it did two weeks ago. Despite his winning form he’s still an $8.50 chance.
“The nine furlongs is probably a touch short but the heavy track and tempo helped last start so we’re banking on that again,’’ he said.
Tailleur wins at Randwick on July 4
“The Wagga Cup was the first time in ages he’d actually been on a heavy track over a trip and he ran a very good race there, albeit finishing fourth. Since then he’s gone bang, bang, with that 2400m run probably just a bit far.’’
The experience of a ride on Scone filly Skara Brae is significant to Collett ahead of the TAB Highway (1100m) after she finished an eye-catching third over 100m on July 4.
Another outside barrier doesn’t concern Collett who said so long as Skara Brae, $6 with TAB, can settle better than last time around she’ll produce a strong turn of foot.
“She did a few things wrong and still managed to run on,’’ he said.
“I’m quite happy having ridden her going forward into Saturday and knowing more about her. Up 100m is suitable and the barrier doesn’t concern me much, she’ll settle in the back half of the field.
“I’m hoping to get her switched off quicker earlier and she will be more effective late.”