Trainer David Vandyke is confident that Arabian Gold will produce an improved performance in the 2015 Coolmore Classic at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
Arabian Gold returned to racing with a relatively flat performance in the Group 3 Guy Walter Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm on February 28, but Vandyke told Racing Ahead that the talented mare had taken plenty of benefit from the run heading into the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m).
The Dubawi mare failed to fire second-up during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival when she finished towards the tail of the field in the Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m), but she generally has a good second-up record and Vandyke is expecting her to perform well in the 2015 Coolmore Classic this weekend.
“Overall she put in a pretty average run there last preparation, but I think that the trip to Melbourne didn’t help and her record second-up is good,” Vandyke said.
“I thought that her first-up run was only fair and I would have liked her to hit the line harder, but part of that may be that she is a bit bigger and stronger this preparation.
“She has progressed well and she does go well second-up.
“She galloped well on this morning.
“Kerrin McEvoy came out to Warwick Farm to ride her and he was pleased.
“She defeated her work partner and she ran nice time and she recovered well.
“We are pretty excited going forward into Saturday.”
Arabian Gold has been included in the nominations for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m), Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) and Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) during The Championships, but Vandyke is keeping his options open with his star galloper.
Vandyke said that Arabian Gold’s performance in the Coolmore Classic will decide where she has her next start and the Warwick Farm-based trainer said that a trip to Brisbane for the Group 1 Doomben Cup (2000m) was also on the agenda for the four-year-old.
“We have the Doncaster, The Queen Of The Turf and The Doomben Cup,” Vandyke said.
“We know how well she races in Queensland and her pet distance is probably 1800 to 2000, but in saying that she needs a few runs under her belt before she gets to that journey.
“Saturday will tell us a lot, it is going to be a pretty good race and it will decide which direction we will go from there.”
Arabian Gold has the chance to record a maiden win at Group 1 level in the Coolmore Classic after previously finishing second behind Tinto in the 2014 edition of the Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2400m).