By Ray Hickson
Trainer Peter Snowden is doing his best to forget talented three-year-old Cosmic Force contested last month’s Galaxy and says he’ll be ridden to his strengths in Saturday’s Group 2 $500,000 Arrowfield Sprint (1200m) at Randwick.
Cosmic Force was a beaten favourite in the Group 1 sprint at Rosehill and managed to beat just one home, an effort that forced the Snowden camp back to the drawing board.
“It was probably the wrong race to run him in, you always learn by your mistakes,’’ Snowden said.
“He is a good sprinter but he is not a horse that has dynamic speed and we rode him to be in the first four or five and I think he was at his top the whole way.
“He didn’t travel and he didn’t run on. He didn’t stop and get beaten a furlong but he was disappointing.
“That’s why I wanted to trial him again, to make sure he is in the right order because I couldn’t explain why he did that.”
As mentioned, the colt was sent back to the trials – for “everyone’s peace of mind” – and Snowden said how James McDonald rode him in the trial is how he’ll be ridden on Saturday.
Cosmic Force wins a trial at Kensington on March 31
That doesn’t mean he will lead the race, as he did the 850m hit out, particularly with a speedy type like Villami engaged but it means he won’t be pushed to be wherever he settles.
Cosmic Force, who caught the eye with slashing a first-up second behind Villami at Randwick, is the $3.50 favourite with TAB to redeem himself in the Arrowfield so all eyes will be on how McDonald plays it.
“Regardless of where he is in the run we want him to be on the bridle like he was in the trial,’’ Snowden said.
“You have to ride him where he is comfortable, if it is a steady pace he might be in the first three or if it is fast you’ll see him back midfield or a bit worse.
“When he won the Pago Pago he was back fourth or fifth, building to fourth on the corner, third in the straight and went to the front. You have to ride him like that, in his comfort zone early and he can finish off like we have seen him do.”
The Snowden camp has a couple of worthy back ups, if you can call them that, to Cosmic Force in the shape of Darby Munro winner California Zimbol ($6.50) and multiple Group winner Anaheed ($8.50).
The latter also contested The Galaxy and finished just ahead of Cosmic Force, her run also worthy of forgiveness while he said California Zimbol shouldn’t be forgotten either.
“Anaheed ran quite well, she was eight deep the whole way and never got into the race. It was too hard to win from out there late in the day,’’ he said.
“And California Zimbol won with a lot up her sleeve, once she got to the front she idled down and she’ll definitely be a hope in the race. Things are made to order for her.”