Big race jockey Glen Boss has dismissed an ‘ordinary’ gallop by Eurozone as he heads towards the Group 1 $500,000 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Boss had to ring fellow jockey Hugh Bowman to put to rest fears that Eurozone had trained off after a below par gallop at Moonee Valley last Friday night.
“He felt ordinary, he gave me nothing. I rang Hughie, he’s done a lot of work with the horse and said ‘he’s the worst track worker, he couldn’t beat maidens,” Boss told Racing Network.
“He hasn’t changed. He’s just a racehorse … turns up on the day and does it.”
Bowman was aboard the Bart And James Cummings trained Eurozone when he won the Group 2 $250,000 Stan Fox Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill last September.
Boss is taking over from Damien Oliver who rode the Northern Meteor colt when a fast finishing nose second to Moment of Change in the Group 1 $400,000 Sportingbet C.F. Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 8.
The Melbourne Cup winning jockey will take that form into account when assessing the chances of Eurozone and brushed aside his poor trackwork session.
“The Orr form has been franked. It is the best form going into the race,” Boss said.
“And, they ran time. It wasn’t as if they sat up. The speed was on all the way and he charged to the line.”
Eurozone ran past Australian Guineas rival Shamus Award when runner up to Moment Of Change who has since won again with a repeat all the way performance to take out the Group 1 $500,000 Cathay Pacific Futurity Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield last Saturday.
Shamus Award was having his first run since winning the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley in October and trainer Danny O’Brien agrees with Boss that the C.F. Orr Stakes form is the best guide.
“I’m not a form analyst, but I would suspect that the Orr Stakes would be the strongest race of the lead up races,” O’Brien said.
“It was weight-for-age against Moment of Change, who’s racing as well as anything in Melbourne at the moment.
“I think both the colts’ runs were full of merit in the Orr and no doubt it was the highest-pressure 1400 race that they’ve run so far this autumn.
“I expect it will stand them in good stead when they come back for the Guineas against their own age.”
While the C.F. Orr Stakes’ form looks the strongest, bookmakers have installed the Adelaide three year old Hucklebuck the favourite with Ladbrokes.com.au assessing him as a $3.80 chance just ahead of Eurozone at $4.20 and Shamus Award at $5.
Hucklebuck made it two wins from two starts this campaign when he recorded a one and a quarter lengths win over Prince Harada in the Group 3 $150,000 C S Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington two weeks ago.
The Phillip Stokes trained gelding is improving with every run and the Morphettville trainer is excited about testing him at Group 1 level.