TESTA Rossa has a good chance of scoring double Group One glory on Derby day tomorrow with a leading chance in VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) as well as Red Colossus in the Mackinnon.
All horses may well find their sire’s own affinity with Flemington a boost to their respective chances – ‘dad’s feats at HQ were some of his best.
“Testa Rossa won three of his six total Group One races at Flemington,” Vinery Stud’s Conor Phelan commented.
“He won the Sires as a 2YO then the Lightning Stakes beating Falvelon in 56.04 seconds and finally the Emirates Mile with 59kgs from barrier 16 and coming from a mile back. Most people say that it was Testa Rossa’s best win.”
Of Testa Rossa’s three hopefuls, punters are forecasting that Sistine Angel is his leading chance.
The Andrew Noblet trained filly won the G2 Edward Manifold Stakes at Flemington before an outstanding effort in the Thousand Guineas.
Noblet reckoned the ‘straight six’ in the Coolmore will be right up her alley.
“I think it will suit her actually,” Noblet said. ”She’ll be at the back, obviously, and will get a cart into the race, and what side of the track or where they are winning from is probably a question mark, but we’ll worry about that on the day.
“She’s freshened-up good and the 1200m at Flemington probably suits a horse like her, being a strong 1400m/miler horse.”
Few would doubt that Sistine Angel’s effort to finish fifth in the Thousand Guineas wasn’t close to the stand-out performance in the race. The wide barrier and soaked track made her task a much more difficult one.
“It was a huge run and if she got half a decent run she would have run in the first two anyway,” Noblet said.
Dual Cox Plate winner So You Think is the main obstacles standing between honest galloper Red Colossus and a win in tomorrow’s L.K.S. Mackinnon Stakes (2000m).
“Clearly So You Think is the horse to beat but Red Colossus hasn’t missed a place this preparation and won his only start over the ten furlongs in Adelaide before his close second in the Derby,” Phelan said.
“He is going to be very big odds and could sneak into the placings under the right circumstances – we know the slow track won’t bother him, he’s very capable on wet ground.”