Anthony Cummings has included both Spy Decoder and Aomen in the 2015 Ajax Stakes field and he is happy with both gallopers heading into the Group 2 event at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
Spy Decoder returned to racing with a third place finish in the Dodo Handicap (1200m) at Royal Randwick on February 14 before he finished fifth in the Hyland Race Colours Handicap (1600m) at Warwick Farm on March 4 and he will face much stiffer competition in the Group 2 Ajax Stakes (1500m) this weekend, but Cummings told TVN that he believes the four-year-old is good enough to win the race and earn a ballot-exempt entry into the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m).
“I am very pleased with the way that he has come along,” Cummings said.
“He got sort of found out a bit second-up at the mile last time with the wide gate and it was a pretty tough run, but he was still there at the finish and competitive with some pretty nice horses.
“I think that he finds himself in a winnable race and it would be nice to get a nice run.
“If he got that, I think that he would be hard to beat.
“I think that he is a Doncaster standard horse at the weights.”
Former Hong Kong galloper Aomen failed to fire when he was given an opportunity at Group level in the Group 2 Villiers Stakes (1600m) at Royal Randwick last December, but he returned to racing with a more than credible sixth place finish behind It’s Somewhat in the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) at Warwick Farm on February 28.
Cummings said that Aomen had trained on strongly since his run in the Liverpool City Cup and he is hopeful that the Shamardal entire can produce another competitive performance in the 2015 Ajax Stakes this weekend.
“He has done well since and it was a very good run,” Cummings said.
“He got taken on a long way from home and he wasn’t too far away at the finish.
“There is a lot of merit in his effort and he continues to work well.”
The 2015 Ajax Stakes field was released by Racing New South Wales this afternoon and the Anthony Cummings-trained duo are set to face stiff competition in the $175,000 event.
Rudy is assured of a start in the Doncaster Mile and he returned to racing with an impressive second in the Liverpool City Cup, while the likes of Malavio, Red Excitement, Pornichet and Slow Pace will also be backing up from the same race.
San Diego returned to racing with a most impressive win at Rosehill Gardens on February 21 and has been set for the Doncaster Mile, while Ninth Legion will drop back in class after finishing seventh in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m).
Ninth Legion is currently on top of 2015 Ajax Stakes betting markets at a quote of $4.60 from Rudy ($5.50), Red Excitement ($6), San Diego ($6.50), Burbero ($8.50) and Pornichet ($9).