2014 Manikato Stakes favourite Terravista has arrived in Melbourne and trainer Joe Pride confirmed that the talented sprinter had no issues handling his first interstate tripe.
Terravista has never previously raced outside of his Sydney, but he has been given the opportunity to take on the best sprinters in Australia after he started his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with wins in the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m) at Royal Randwick on August 23 and the Group 2 The Shorts (1100m) at the same venue on September 20.
Pride told RSN this morning that Terravista had travelled from Sydney to Melbourne overnight, along with stablemate Diamond Oasis, and he said that the Captain Rio gelding had no issues during the trip ahead of the Manikato Stakes at Moonee Valley tomorrow night.
“I got a phone call about 15 minutes ago to let me know that he has got there safe and sound along with Diamond Oasis,” Pride said.
“He hasn’t travelled before, but it went really well and it is early days but his temperature is normal and he had his head down straight into the feed bin.
“We will found out more over the next 24 hours as to how he has travelled.”
Pride has not been shy in impressing his opinion of Terravista and he maintains that he genuinely believes that the five-year-old is the best sprinter in the world and capable of recording his maiden win at Group 1 level in the Manikato Stakes.
The only concerns that Pride has is how Terravista will handle his first experience at Moonee Valley and under lights, but he admits that these elements are out of his control.
“This horse is a little bit different to a lot of the other horses that I have trained and I have put pretty high expectations on him,” Pride said.
“I can’t help that, that is what I feel about the horse and I really feel that he is a great talent.
“I’ve had a people say dial it down, dial it down, but I love this horse and I just think that he has so much upside to him.
“I don’t mind letting everybody know that.
“I only have a couple of doubts about tomorrow night and they centre around variables which I can’t do anything about, which is racing under lights for the first time and racing around the Valley for the first time.
“If this race was at Randwick next week I would be extremely confident that he would beat these horses, but these variables are significant things and they are totally out of our control.”
The 2014 Manikato Stakes barrier draw was conducted on Tuesday morning and Pride was happy to draw barrier seven with the consistent sprinter.
Pride said that he expects there to be plenty of pace in the early stages of the Manikato Stakes, with Lankan Rupee challenging Buffering for the lead, and he hopes that Terravista can sit just behind the leader before finishing over the top of his rivals.
“It looks a pretty straightforward one in that Buffering is going to kick up from the four,” Pride said.
“Craig Newitt come under a fair bit of criticism last start for taking a trail off that horse and I can only imagine that he is going to go forward and put pressure on him.
“I can’t see them not applying a real genuine tempo and there are a couple out wider that are go forward horses and they can’t suck back.
“My bloke isn’t always electric out of the gates, but within that first 100 he starts to muster speed and get into a really nice rhythm.
“I am pretty pleased with my draw and I am picturing him running fourth in the run.”
Terravista is available at 2014 Manikato Stakes odds of $3.90 and he is locked in a battle for favouritism with triple Group 1 winner Lankan Rupee ($3.90).