The Robert Smerdon-trained duo of Fontein Ruby and Politeness impressed onlookers with their impressive performances in a barrier trial at Cranbourne this morning.
Fontein Ruby and Politeness contested the opening barrier trial of the morning over 990 metres and the pair were both settled in the first half of the 12 horse field, while Pat Carey-trained Solomon’s Song took up the running in the early stages of the trial.
Jockey Mark Zahra kept Fontein Ruby under a heavy hold coming into the Cranbourne straight, but she was still able to work home strongly and he took up the running at the 150 metre mark before running away from his rivals to record an impressive win.
Fontein Ruby was sent to the spelling paddock after she finished at the tail of the field in the Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m) at Flemington on November 6, but she has appeared to relish her time away from the stable and is set to resume in the Group 3 Kevin Hayes Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 14 before pressing on to the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington on March 7.
Politeness was settled towards the inside of the field in the early stages of the barrier trial and was restrained for the majority of the straight, but she showed her trademark turn-of-foot to fly home late when she was taken to the outside by jockey Nick Hall.
The Street Sense mare did not have a great deal of luck during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but she was able to return to winning form with a most impressive effort in the Group 3 Summoned Stakes (1500m) at Sandown on November 15.
Smerdon is desperate to win a Group 1 with Politeness during the 2015 Autumn Racing Carnival and she is set to return to racing in the Belamine Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 14 before stepping up to the highest level of racing for the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 14.
Another horse that could be heading towards the Coolmore Classic is Pat Hyland-trained Bonaria and she was given a quiet trial in her first public appearance since she took out the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) in the spring, while the likes of Like A Carousel, Bring Something, Escado and Noble Protector were given an easy time.