Another good performance by Affirmation in the Group 3 $125,000 Up and Coming Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on Saturday will secure a start for the three year old in the $1m Golden Rose Stakes.
Affirmation was most impressive in recording his second win when a three lengths victory over 1400m at Caulfield on July 26 at the end of his two year old season and another first class outing will give trainer Tony McEvoy confidence to head towards the Group 1 $1m Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on September 13.
“I thought he was ultra-impressive with 57-1/2 (kilograms) on his back, running better sectionals than the Bletchingly Stakes on the day,” McEvoy told AAP.
“If he shows me that he’s really competitive on Saturday in this class we’ll certainly consider the million-dollar race.”
Glyn Schofield has been booked to ride Affirmation taking over from Mark Zahra who steered him home at Caulfield.
The Up And Coming Stakes for the three year olds attracted thirteen entries on Monday with the Australian Turf Club extending nominations until 11am on Tuesday.
Among the first wave of entries are the Paul Messara trained Scissor Kick and Better Land from the Peter Moody stable who will clash again after running the quinella in the Listed $100,000 The Rosebud (1200m) at Randwick on August 9.
Messara will also have Redoute’s Choice colt Panzer Division resuming after a short break following his three and a half lengths maiden win over 1200m at Kembla Grange on July 19.
Gai Waterhouse had nominated the wayward Liberation as well Group 2 Skyline Stakes winner Valentia.
Liberation was relegated to second behind Press Report after running out in the straight at Rosehill on August 2 following a win at Rosehill two weeks earlier while Valentia has trialled twice for a second and a win at Randwick in preparation for his return.
John O’Shea has nominated two three year olds from the Godolphin stable, Lonhro colt Kumaon and the well-bred Medaglia D’Oro colt Meursault.
Kumaon was sent for spell after running third to Go Indy Go in the Group 1 $400,000 Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on April 26 while Meursault created a huge impression with a three lengths debut win in the $125,000 Evergreen Turf Claret Stakes (1300m) at Hawkesbury’s standalone Saturday meeting on May 3.
In the early Golden Rose Stakes market order with Ladbrokes.com.au Better Land is on the second line of betting at $9 behind the Waterhouse trained Almalad and last start winner Nostradamus at $8 while Meursault is at $17, Affirmation at $21, Valentia at $26 and Kumaon at $31.