Autumn Preparations Underway For Va Pensiero

Va Pensiero was the only horse to beat Zoustar during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival but trainer Jason Coyle is undecided whether he will give the classy colt another opportunity to knock off the champion three-year-old during the 2014 Autumn Racing Carnival.

Va Pensiero scored one of the biggest upsets of the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival when he beat Zoustar and Dissident in The Run To The Rose.

Va Pensiero scored one of the biggest upsets of the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival when he beat Zoustar and Dissident in The Run To The Rose. Photo by: Steve Hart

Va Pensiero spent six weeks in the spelling paddock, following his disappointing performance in the Group 3 Telstra Phonewords Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Cox Plate Day, and Coyle told RSN this morning that the colt had relished his time in the paddock.

Coyle said that Va Pensiero will return to full-time work at his Warwick Farm stable just after Christmas but is yet to decide which races the son of Stratum will be set for in the autumn; with the rising trainer unsure whether he will give Va Pensiero another shot at the highest level of racing.

“He has just come back into work up at Limitless Lodge,” Coyle said.

“He will probably do a week or two up there, just nice slow stuff, and then come into the stable.

“He has spelled particularly well and I am really looking forward to the autumn.

“I have no plans set out in stone yet, we will just get him in and I will have a chat with connections and see what level we want to aim at.

“He has form around the top level of three-year-olds but we will decide whether we want to take them on again or maybe look at the level below and see if we can knock off a few more races.”

Va Pensiero started his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with an upset victory in the Group 3 San Domenico Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens on August 17 and caused an even bigger boilover a fortnight later when he upset Dissident, Zoustar, Cluster and Eurozone to win the Group 3 The Run To The Rose (1200m).

He had no luck when fourth behind Barbed in the Listed Heritage Stakes (1100m) at Royal Randwick on September 21 and failed to fire behind Zoustar in the Group 2 Roman Consul Stakes (1200m) before finishing a most unlucky fourth behind Lion Of Belfort in the Blue Sapphire (1200m) at Caulfield on October 12.

Coyle has not scored a race win at Group level since Va Pensiero’s victory in The Run To The Rose but he will has the chance to record another big victory in Sydney tomorrow; with Scream Machine one of the leading contenders in the Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1550m).

About The Author

Thomas Hackett

Thomas is a passionate and opinionated racing journalist and punter who has been obsessed with horse racing since he backed Saintly to win the 1996 Melbourne Cup. An international racing enthusiast, he has his finger on the pulse of racing news not just from Australia but all around the world.

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