Vancouver will defend his unbeaten record in the 2015 Silver Slipper Stakes at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday and regular jockey Tommy Berry is happy with the condition of the talented juvenile.
Vancouver made his racing debut with an impressive victory in the Listed New South Wales Thoroughbred Breeders Plate (1000m) at Royal Randwick on October 4, but there were some doubts placed on his ability after he did not trial particularly strongly at Royal Randwick on January 15.
Berry was always adamant that Vancouver would be a completely different horse when he had blinkers applied for the Group 3 Canonbury Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens on January 31 and his faith in the son of Medaglia D’Oro was justified when he worked home strongly from the tail of the field to stamp himself as a one of the favourites for the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m).
The leading Sydney hoop told TVN this morning that Vancouver has taken plenty of benefit from his first-up run and is ready to produce an even stronger effort in the Silver Slipper Stakes this weekend.
“It’s been well documented he’s not a great track-worker but he gets the job done on race-day,” Berry said.
“He’s definitely much fitter, definitely.
“He stamps himself this horse.
“He’s an awesome looking colt and he looks like he can run as well as being able to.”
The Silver Slipper Stakes is always a major lead-up race for the Golden Slipper and this year is set to be no exception; with ten talented juveniles included in the nominations for the Group 2 event.
Mishani Honcho has recorded four wins from seven race starts in Queensland and will make the trip down to Sydney for the Silver Slipper, while Godolphin colts Holler and Ottoman, debut winner Paceman, the well-bred Headwater, Pat Farrell-trained Alart and the David Vandyke-trained Snitzel’s Goddess and Kylie’s Fame are also expected to contest the race.
Berry took out the 2013 edition of the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) on Overreach, but he is still chasing his first win in the Silver Slipper Stakes after finishing ninth on Wild And Proud in 2011, sixth on A Bridge Too Far in 2012, ninth on Shahad in 2013 and last on Hampton Court last year.
Vancouver is currently available at 2015 Golden Slipper odds of $7 and is locked in a battle for favouritism with Ottoman ($7).