Chill Party will make his debut at Group level in the 2014 Sandown Guineas and trainer Tom Hughes believes that the promising colt is a genuine winning chance in the Group 2 event at Sandown on Saturday.
Chill Party started his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with wins at Kyneton and Wangaratta before he finished an unlucky second behind Petrology in the Listed TV Stakes (1800m) at Flemington on Crown Oaks Day.
Hughes believes that the slow tempo in the early stages of the TV Stakes cruelled the winning chances of Chill Party, but he told RSN that he is thrilled with the way that the Nicconi colt has come through the run heading into the 2014 Sandown Guineas this weekend.
“He has come up really good and his win at Wangaratta was really good,” Hughes said.
“He stepped up the other day and he was a little bit unlucky because they walked from the 900 to about the 500 and that probably cost him the race.
“He is a really nice, kind horse, he doesn’t show us much on the track, but he has done really well since the other day and the horse has really trained on really good.
“It is a very open race.
“We have been to Sandown before and that might be a bit of a plus for us we are hoping.”
Veteran jockey Brian Werner has ridden Chill Party in all three of his race starts this preparation and he has been booked to partner the three-year-old in the Sandown Guineas this weekend.
Werner has not ridden a metropolitan winner since he steered Godeera to victory in the Fujitsu Handicap (2040m) at Moonee Valley on February 7, but Hughes said that he was happy to stick with the experienced hoop.
“He comes down and does trials for me and he came down and rode the horse in a gallop for me the Saturday before we raced.
“We have had a bit of luck.
“He was a victim of circumstances the other day, you can’t control how quick they are going to go, and if they had have gone hard he probably wins easy.”
Chill Party is currently available at 2014 Sandown Guineas odds of $21, while Carbine Club Stakes runner-up Stratum Star ($2.80) is a clear favourite from Paul Messara-trained Rekindled Power ($3.80), the undefeated Lord Aspen ($4.80) and Peter Moody-trained Ducal Castle.