A standout performer over major staying events through the 2014 Autumn Carnival, jockey Tommy Berry is confident classy five-year-old The Offer is capable of reversing his slow spring start in this afternoon’s Group 1 Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington.
Contesting an impressive record of six wins and a further five minor places from just 18 competitive starts so far, The Offer began his racing career under the guidance of renowned Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien before transferring to the care of Gai Waterhouse at the conclusion of 2012.
Disappointing when beating only one runner home in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) last time out on September 20th, Berry told The Herald Sun he is confident the conditions of the Turnbull Stakes will play directly into the strengths of the son of Montjeu and is expecting a competitive performance.
“He’s not a weight-for-age type horse. He’s nothing like Fiorente, for instance. The Offer is a dead-set two-miler,” Berry said.
“I think the horse is going well but this is a big track, three runs in at 1600m.
“He’d want to improve again and certainly run in the first four or five.”
Immediately stamping his claims as one to watch over his maiden racing preparation in early 2012, highlighted by a credible third in the Group 3 Curragh Cup (2816m), The Offer performed well over just three starts through the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival; peaking when taking out the featured Ballarart Cup (2200m) by nearly four lengths on November 23rd.
Overcoming a luckless performance for sixth in a minor over 1400m first-up this year when running on for third in the Listed Randwick City Stakes (2000m), the gelding out of Valdara charged home to win the Group 3 NE Manion Cup (2400m) by close to four lengths on March 29th; repeating the dose in the Group 2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) before breaking through for a maiden victory at the highest level of Australian racing in the Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) on Day 2 of The Championships.
Remaining favourite in early markets for the 2014 Melbourne Cup, The Offer is currently available at a generous quote of $16 for success in this afternoon’s Turnbull Stakes with Ladbrokes Australia.