Proven Group 1 performer Holler is chasing back to back wins at the elite level when he takes on a slick field in the Group 1 $500,000 Mitchelton Wines William Reid Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on Thursday night.
With the blinkers on for the first time Holler led all of the way to win the Group 1 $500,000 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on March 5 and trainer John O’Shea considers the three year old still to have more improvement left in him.
“He’s established himself as a genuine G1 horse and he’s still on the way up,” O’Shea said.
“His Moonee Valley record is outstanding, which should work a lot in his favour.”
Holler has been to Moonee Valley on two previous occasions for wins in the Group 3 $150,000 Telstra Phonewords Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley during the 2105 Melbourne Spring Carnival and more recently in the Group 2 $200,000 Jeep Australia Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on January 23.
Holler has produced four wins and four placings from ten race starts and has lived up to O’Shea’s high opinion of the Commands colt.
“He’s a horse we’ve always had a very high opinion of and to see him win a G1 race as he did was a huge thrill for the whole team,” O’Shea said.
“The Melbourne stable did a great job with him early in this preparation and sent him back to us in Sydney in fantastic order. Now he’s going back to Melbourne and running at a track that he really enjoys.”
Holler is one of four three year olds taking on the older horses at weight for age but is the only one proven at these conditions with his win in the Canterbury Stakes.
The Peter Moody trained Kinglike has also had a taste at weight for age when narrowly beaten by English at Group 2 level in the $500,000 Hyland Race Colours Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Randwick on March 5 and Chris Waller’s Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes winner Japonisme was also beaten two starts back in a three way photo finish in the weight for age Group 1 $750,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington on February 20.
While the Team Hawkes trained three year old Headwater has the blinkers on for the first time as he takes a huge step up in class after finishing eighth to Malaguerra in the Listed $120,000 ATA/Bob Hoysted Handicap (1000m) at Flemington on March 5.
Holler is on the second line of betting at $4.20 for the William Reid Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au behind the $3.40 favourite Lucky Hussler.
Japonisme is also in the betting at $5.50 and ahead of Kinglike at $8.
William Reid Stakes market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $3.40 Lucky Hussler, $4.20 Holler, $5.50 Japonisme, $8 Kinglike, $12 Flamberge, $15 The Quarterback, Churchill Dancer, $26 Fast ‘N’ Rocking, Gregers, Headwater, $41 Scarlet Billows, $61 It Is Written.