Premier Melbourne trainer Peter Moody is not conceding that the Group 1 $350,000 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Rosehill on Saturday is a two horse race.
Sydney racegoers are anxiously awating the clash between their two super stars, More Joyous and top three year old Pierro but Moody has declared that his Group 1 winner Moment Of Change has the goods to upset the Gai Waterhouse trained pair.
“He is flying,” Moody said.
“I know he’s taking on Pierro and More Joyous on their own turf, but they shouldn’t underestimate this horse.”
“They will know they have been in a race. I’m very much excited about him, very positive indeed.”
Moody wasn’t surprised when Moment Of Change stepped up to Group 1 company to win the $400,000 Clamms Seafood Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield in the Spring and has been placed at Group 1 level twice since resuming from a break.
Moment Of Change ran a mighty race when second to stablemate superstar Black Caviar when she ran a track record in winning the Group 1 $500,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington on February 16.
And the Barely A Moment four year old was nabbed right on the line when second to Shamexpress in the Group 1 $1m Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington on March 9.
The clash between high profile stablemates More Joyous and Pierro has been promoted as a highlight of the first day of The BMW Sydney Carnival but Moody will be more than happy to spoil the local’s party.
More Joyous has a terrific first up record with Nash Rawiller sticking with the multiple Group 1 winning mare while Jim Cassidy has picked up the ride on the super colt Pierro who will have the blinkers back on.
Waterhouse had always planned to run More Joyous first up in the Canterbury Stakes but a change of plans for Pierro will now see Tulloch Lodge’s two super stars clashing in the weight for age race which is being run as a Group 1 for the time.
“More Joyous has been set for this race, she’s won this race before and is bombproof first-up,” Waterhouse said.
It was thought that Pierro would follow a traditional three year old path during the Autumn but owner Greg Kolivos opted to take on the older horses on his way to the Group 1 $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on April 20 for which he is the $4.50 favourite.
“After Pierro won first-up, I spoke with Greg Kolivos to discuss if we’d run in the Randwick Guineas at Warwick Farm, and he wasn’t mad about going there,” Waterhouse said.
Sydney sprinter Rain Affair looks likely to cross the field from the outside barrier ten and set the pace with Moment Of Change from gate nine and Pierro from gate seven taking up a spot just behind the leader.
Rawiller will be able to position More Joyous in a handy position just behind the speed from barrier four and have her well placed for a strong finish.
More Joyous who has won the Canterbury Stakes the last two years, is a winner first up on six occasions from eight attempts and is ready to perform at her best having her first run since running eleventh to Ocean Park in the Group 1 $3m Sportingbet Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley last Spring.
The eight times Group 1 winner has won two Randwick barrier trials in her lead up preparation while Pierro is coming off a gutsy first win in the Group 2 $200,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on March 2.