A particularly talented field on 18 has been nominated for the 2014 Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens this weekend, including several previous winners at the highest level of Australian racing.
Fresh off the back of a Group 1 victory in the Canterbury Stakes (1300m) on March 15th, Appearance has been nominated for a position in the 2014 George Ryder Stakes.
Claiming nine wins and three places from only 19 starts to date, Appearance followed up a strong 2012 spring campaign which undoubtedly peaked with a resounding win in the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) with arguably her best preparation to date over the autumn of 2013; peaking with back-to-back wins in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1500m).
Having returned to the track in typically scintillating form this season, the classy daughter of Commands has won all three starts so far, with victories in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m) and Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) preceding the Canterbury Stakes.
Trainer Guy Walter has an understandably high opinion on Appearance, and is more than confident the talented five-year-old will continue her perfect preparation this weekend.
Returning to form with a strong victory in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) last time out, Boban has also been included in nominations for the 2014 George Ryder Stakes.
Arguably the best race horse to contest the 2013 spring carnival, Boban secured five wins from five starts, including the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) and Group 1 Emirates Stakes (1600m).
Despite claiming resounding favouritism for the Expressway Stakes first-up this preparation, the classy Bernardini gelding was unable to match the late pace of Appearance, finishing nearly four lengths off the pace in fifth.
Similarly in the Apollo Stakes second-up, jockey Nash Rawiller was unable to draw the best from the talented miler, finishing a length outside the places in fourth.
The Chipping Norton saw the return of regular jockey throughout the 2013 spring campaign Glyn Schofield to the saddle on the four-year-old, immediately reversing fortunes and steering Boban back to the winner’s circle.
Having already been confirmed for ride in the George Ryder Stakes this weekend, Schofield is confident of another polished run with the proven champion.
Classy colt El Roca will be aiming to break a drought at the top level of Australian racing this weekend, having also been included in George Ryder nominations.
El Roca has returned to the racing scene in good order this preparation, following up a strong win in the Listed Eskimo Price Stakes (1200m) first-up with an unlucky second in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) on March 8th.
Claiming outright favouritism for the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) most recently, the exciting Fastnet Rock colt produced a strong final straight sprint, but was unable to catch a tear-away Dissident, finishing only a nose away from a maiden Group 1 title.
Despite his less-than-ideal end in the Randwick Guineas, co-trainer Trent Busuttin is confident El Roca’s current form will go a long way in breaking through for a win in the George Ryder Stakes this weekend.
Fontelina produced a memorable sprint in the William Reid Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley last Friday evening and appeared to have overcome leading Queensland-based sprinter Spirit Of Boom to break through for a maiden Group 1 victory, however was revealed to have nodded at the worst possible time crossing the line, finishing second.
Having confirmed the Testa Rossa gelding will solely contest events at Group 1 level this season, trainer Anthony Cummings has been pleased with Fontelina’s recent form and is confident in a strong race this weekend.
The final field and barrier draw for the 2014 George Ryder Stakes is due to be released on Wednesday morning.
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2014 George Ryder Stakes Nominations
|2||BEL THOR||Wez Hunter||92|
|4||EL ROCA||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||104|
|5||EUROZONE||Bart & James Cummings||100|
|6||FAT AL||Peter G Moody||104|
|8||GORDON LORD BYRON (IRE)||Tom Hogan||114|
|9||LIDARI (FR)||Peter G Moody||104|
|10||MY KINGDOM OF FIFE (GB)||Chris Waller||112|
|11||NINTH LEGION||Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes||100|
|12||RED TRACER||Chris Waller||115|
|13||SACRED FALLS (NZ)||Chris Waller||111|
|18||TRES BLUE (IRE)||Gai Waterhouse||104|