VINERY resident Mossman may be on the verge of a feature Stakes double with the Epsom bound Neeson and Triple Elegance expected to play a strong hand in their respective races at Warwick Farm tomorrow.
Crack sprinter/miler Neeson boasts a tremendous second-up record, a fact which trainer Joe Pride believes will stand him in good stead in his quest for the Show County Quality (1300m).
”He is a bit of a hard horse to get a line on first-up because he can run well below what you think he is capable of then second-up he improves a heap and third-up he obviously improves again,” Pride offered.
Neeson will be partnered by sought after freelance jockey Christian Reith who sees barrier one at a significant plus for the renowned on-pacer.”Barrier one is better than barrier 10 because he’s a go forward horse who can just dictate the pace of the race,” he said.
”And he always improves second-up. His run was a lot better first-up than it has been in the past so I think the horse will jump out of the ground on Saturday.”
While Neeson is totally at home on wet ground, the same cannot be said for the Chris Waller trained Triple Elegance who tackles the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m).
”He wouldn’t perform at his best if the track was heavy, that’s for sure,” a cautious Waller told Sportsman.
Nonetheless, the trainer was pleased with Triple Elegance’s first-up 7.5-lens sixth of the nine runners in the Group 2 Missile Stakes (1200m) won by the untapped Rain Affair.
”He is a year older now and not quite as sharp as he needed to be racing at that level so I wasn’t disappointed and he’ll certainly clean-up a lot from that and tighten-up, which he has.”
Triple Elegance returns to the scene of his first stakes win tomorrow having taken out the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) back in the autumn.
”It was a great win and he followed that up with a good run in the George Ryder which showed me that he was up to that next level and I am sure he hasn’t gone backwards and he can at least hold that form and hopefully even improve a bit more,” said Waller.
Triple Elegance’s chances of winning the Warwick Stakes were enhanced after the five-year-old came up with a favourable draw in the 13-horse field.
”Let’s hope the track is racing fair – I am sure it will be – but with barrier 2 you can at least stay one-off the fence and it gives you some options.
”Triple Elegance can race up on the pace over that distance and I would expect him too.
”Tomorrow will tell us whether we can continue on a weight-for-age path towards the Epsom or whether we have to go through the handicaps which would probably be slightly easier.”