Sydney’s leading rider High Bowman will get his first feel of Sincero under race conditions in the Group 2 $175,000 Myer Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Bowman takes over from Chris O’Brien who formed a great association with the four year old including a win in the 2011 Group 1 $350,000 George Main Stakes (1500m).
Trainer Stephen Farley thought it was time for a change and booked Bowman last month for the Canterbury Stakes with the option to ride him through the Autumn.
“He’s up to those good races now, and it’s nothing against Chris but we’ve probably got the best rider in Sydney at the moment,” Farley said.
Bowman got to partner Sincero in a Rosehill barrier trial on March 6 when he was able to beat the Gai Waterhouse trained More Joyous by a nose on a slow track.
He again comes up against More Joyous under weight for age conditions on a track rated a heavy 8 at the moment but which is likely to improve for the weekend with mainly fine weather predicted for the next few days.
“More Joyous is definitely the horse to beat,” Farley said.
“But we’re up to the class now and you can’t dodge them.”
Sincero has a terrific first up record with three wins from four attempts including a victory in the Group 3 $125,000 Tattersalls Club Tramway Handicap (1400m) at Warwick Farm at the start of his last campaign.
The Umatilla gelding hasn’t started since finishing seventh to Glass Harmonium in the Group 1 $1m Longines Mackinnon Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on Derby Day last year but Farley is confident he will sprint well first up and is hoping the track does improve.
“He will sprint well fresh. He’s very good that way,” Farley said.
“The firmer the better. Only because a wet track is a bit more taxing first-up.”
“But if we didn’t run it would throw everything out the window because there isn’t another race for him the following week.”
Farley is keen to head back to Brisbane for the winter and give Sincero a chance for back to back Stradbroke Handicaps but is leaving his options open for a start in the Group 1 $2m Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on April 21.
After Saturday Farley has pencilled in the Group 1 $400,000 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on Golden Slipper day and then will decide what direction he will go.
“Definitely those two and then we’ll weigh up whether to go to the Doncaster,” Farley said.
“We’ve paid up for it but we’ll have a look at how he’s going and how the field is shaping up.”
Sincero is currently on the third line of betting at $10 for the Canterbury Stakes with More Joyous the $2.50 favourite and the Team Hawkes trained Love Conquers All splitting them at $8.