THE stocks of Vinery Stud sire Benicio are well and truly on the rise this autumn up with the strong possibility of a Group 2 double on opposite sides of the continent.
Trainer Mick Price has signalled a classic campaign ahead for Benicio’s emerging stayer Cuban Sunday who bagged a hat-trick of wins when powering away to score at Sandown on Wednesday.
”The Group 2 Alister Clark is in nine days and is probably a good race for him to have a go at,” Price said.
”He’s a nice horse and I would like to get him to the SA Derby but it is going to be hard to keep him up that long.
”You have got to get the timing right and I am just hoping there is enough petrol in the tank.
”We may have some sort of attempt at it but it will be difficult because he is quite a high energy horse and burns off a bit of fuel.”
Meanwhile, crack Perth two-year-old Benny’s Halo is honing in on next month’s prestigious WATC Karrakatta Plate (1200m) after recording wins at his first and second starts before a fast finishing third at Ascot at his most recent outing.
”The Karrakatta will be his next run and it will suit him better over more ground. The 1400 will also suit him better,” Benny’s Halo’s trainer Neville Smith said in an interview with the West Australian.
Benny’s Halo is then likely to tackle the 1400m WATC Sires’ Produce Stakes, worth $200,000, run at Ascot a fortnight after the $500,000 Karrakatta Plate.
Still in the west and Benicio filly and Listed WATC Natasha Stakes (2200m) hopeful Bellaben seems sure to improve on her last start effort when finishing midfield in the WATC 1000 Guineas last start behind More Than Ready miss Dreamaway.
”It is going to take a good filly to beat Dreamaway – she’s been the yardstick of her age and from a mile and upwards, but Bellaben should relish the trip,” says Vinery Stud’s Conor Phelan.