Trainer David Vandyke believes that talented filly Arabian Gold will be on top of her game for the 2014 The Roses at Doomben on Saturday.
Arabian Gold made a slow start to her autumn campaign and Vandyke admitted that he was worried that the daughter of Dubawi had not come back up for her autumn campaign, but she proved those fears were unfounded when she took out the Group 3 Adrian Knox Stakes (2000m) at Royal Randwick on April 12 before beating the colts in the Group 3 Frank Packer Plate (2000m) at the same venue a fortnight later.
Vandyke told Racing Ahead that Arabian Gold had come out of her Frank Packer Plate win in excellent condition and he is confident that the filly will produce another strong performance in The Roses this weekend.
“It is interesting that through this preparation there were a couple of times where we thought that she mightn’t have come back,” Vandyke said.
“She is going better than ever and she arrived at the Gold Coast in the early hours of this morning and travelled up well on the float.
“I couldn’t be happier with her at the moment and I just want to see her eat up over the next couple of nights and she should be on top of her game.”
Arabian Gold has shown plenty of tactical versatility throughout her racing career and was settled towards the tail of the field before showing impressive acceleration in the Frank Packer Plate.
The three-year-old will jump from barrier one in The Roses and Vandyke said that he will be leaving the riding instructions up to jockey Blake Shinn, but expects the leading hoop to settle the filly on the fence in the early stages of the race.
“Barrier one is just gold for a horse like her because she is very quick out and she needs cover,” Shinn said.
“She is not the sort of horse that you want to be digging out of the gates because she has that early pace anyway and she does have a tendency to over race if she can see daylight.
“Blake will jump her out and she will just find a position behind the leader or three back the fence.
“I am going to leave the rest of it up to Blake, with the only instruction being patience.
“If she tracks something up into the straight, even if she is momentarily blocked for a run or inconvenienced, I don’t think that is going to determinedly affect her chances of winning too much because we saw how electrifying her sprint can be in both the Adrian Knox and the Frank Packer Plate.”
Vandyke is taking it one race at a time with Arabian Gold, but said that she remains a chance of contesting both the Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m) and Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m) during the 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.