Caulfield trainer Henry Dwyer has Group 1 Brisbane Winter Carnival ambitions including the 2017 Tattersall’s Tiara for his filly Leotie who races at home this weekend in Melbourne.
Heading to the track for the first time in six weeks, the three-year-old daughter of Darci Brahma is one of a bumper 35 nominations taking by Racing Victoria for Saturday’s $100,000 Super Vobis Three-Years-Old Handicap (1200m) at Caulfield Racecourse.
Leotie was last seen running last when ninth to Hear The Chant in a set weights plus penalties race for three-year-old fillies over 1100m at Flemington on March 18, her first run since undergoing arthroscopic surgery on her fetlock to remove a bone chip.
She has been freshened-up since that first-up assignment and Dwyer is hoping she improves on Saturday as he eyes tougher interstate races for her in the coming months.
“I’d like to get her back to the track and racing well next Saturday to warrant going north,” Dwyer told AAP on Sunday.
“But at her best she’s certainly worth taking up there [to Queensland].”
After time spent on the coast at Dwyer’s St Leonards property on the North Shore of Sydney, Leotie looked good in a Geelong jump-out last Wednesday.
“She trialled well and she’ll go to a 1200 three-year-old race next Saturday,” Dwyer told AAP on Sunday.
“Then we’ll probably take her up to NSW for the Scone Guineas two weeks later [on May 13].
“It’s a $400,000 Inglis race and from there we’ll look to a couple of black-type races in Queensland with her.”
During the spring last year Leotie proved she had potential with a number of good runs including her second to subsequent Myer Classic winner I Am A Star in the Group 3 Quezette Stakes (1100m).
She went on to post back-to-back 1400m victories, before she was stepped right up in grade finishing tenth to Global Glamour in the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) over the mile.
Dwyer isn’t shying away from another elite level run with his up-and-comer this season naming the $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m) at Eagle Farm Racecourse on June 24 as a potential target if all went well.
“She’s stakes placed and got beaten a head by I Am A Star in the Quezette Stakes and probably should have beaten her,” he said.
“But she’s had a lot of issues since then. She’s trained out at St Leonards and lives out in a paddock there.
“She’s got a lot of breathing issues and allergic issues to things in the city environment.
“I think we’re on top of what was holding her back.”
The last three-year-old filly to beat home the older mares in Queensland’s Tattersall’s Tiara, formerly the Winter Stakes, was the Gai Waterhouse-trained Cosmic Endeavour in 2014.
Early favourites in the pre-nomination Tattersall’s Tiara markets this season include Andrew Noblet’s four-year-old William Reid Stakes winner Silent Sedition and the aforementioned Group 1 winning I Am A Star for Mornington’s Shane Nichols.