ULTRA-CONSISTENT mare Ofcourseican takes the first step towards possible Group 1 glory this autumn when she resumes in a hotly-contested Listed Triscay Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill tomorrow.
The Ron Quinton trained galloper has barely put a foot wrong throughout her career with six wins and 11 placings from 23 starts including a value boosting triumph in the Listed Wenona Girl at Warwick Farm during the autumn.
While no doubt destined for stud in the near future, Quinton is focusing all his skill and attention on securing as much black-type as possible before she leaves his Randwick stables.
“Her half-brother, Gimmiethegreenlight, won a Group 1 in South Africa so she’s a very valuable mare and I am trying to increase that value for (her owner/breeder) David Bentata,” Quinton told Sportsman.
Ofcourseican hasn’t faced the starter since finishing third in the Listed ATC Nivison Stakes (1200m) at Randwick following minor placings in the Sheraco and Golden Pendant.
“She always runs well in the early part of her prep,” says Quinton.
“Last preparation she only had the three runs and ran third three times so we are hoping she can take the next step.”
Five of Ofcoursiecan’s six wins have been on good surfaces but Quinton isn’t fazed by the prospect of a dampish track tomorrow.
“It wouldn’t worry me if it was a bit rain affected, she has run on wet ground before as a younger horse and handled it, so a bit of give in the ground would suit her.
“The big field is a concern,” Quinton conceded. “If you kick her up she can over race, and if you jump her out and go real steady, she gets too far back.
“So we’ve got to leave that to Hughie (Bowman) to sort that one out.”
While a number of Ofcourseican’s Triscay rivals will be looking ahead towards races like the Queen of the Turf and Coolmore Classic, both over 1500m, Quinton’s mare is likely to be saved for the sprints.
“I wouldn’t be concerned about stepping her up to 1400m at some stage but she basically likes a nice fast run race,” he explained.
“We’ll see how she goes at her first couple and we could even look at something like the Galaxy; we’ll just take it step by step and see.”
Meanwhile, multiple stakeswinner sprinter Neeson opens his autumn campaign in tomorrow’s Group 3 Southern Cross Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill against a quality line up.
Neeson, trained by Joe Pride, has won 8 races including the Group 2 ATC Premiere Stakes, Group 3 Tramway Handicap as well as the STC Darby Munro S and Hawkesbury Guineas.