Warrnambool training combination of Bill and Symon Wilde are hoping for back to back wins in the Group 2 $350,000 Sportingbet Sandown Guineas (1600m) at Sportingbet Sandown Park tomorrow with three year old Gold Medals in the last Group race of the Melbourne Spring Carnival.
Symon Wilde saddled up last year’s winner So Swift and believes that Gold Medals is as every bit as good as the Barely A Moment gelding who scored by a nose from the Gai Waterhouse trained Niagara and favourite Galah.
“We’ve always had a good opinion of Gold Medals, even as a two year old when he had his first start at Warrnambool,” Wilde said.
“I don’t think there is a lot between them. This bloke is a bit more robust, a bit tougher, and that is why I’m not concerned about him backing up basically three weeks in a row.”
Gold Medals won his first race start at Warrnambool in April and even though he was beaten at his next start, Wilde pencilled in the Sandown Guineas as his main Spring target.
“We tipped him out in May with the Guineas in mind, we thought it would be a nice aim at the end of the carnival with a horse on the way up,” Wilde said.
“I thought we would got to Stawell and he’d just win but he didn’t have a lot of luck.”
“He’s very relaxed, doesn’t over race and will just lob anywhere. He’s bombproof and his breeding and what he’s shown at home he shouldn’t have any trouble with a mile.”
Wilde wasn’t afraid to take Gold Medals to Flemington after getting beaten at Stawell and the Elvstroem three year old performed above expectations when a solid third from the outside barrier to Eximius in the Listed $150,000 Hilton Hotels Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on November 10
“We wanted to make sure he was up to this grade by running him at Flemington otherwise we’d have to drop our sights,” Wilde said.
“Drawing outside at the 1400m at Flemington is always hard and had he drawn a gate Michael Rodd feels he would have got the win.”
Rodd has taken the ride again on Gold Medals and will no doubt get a better run after drawing the inside gate in the capacity field of sixteen.
Gold Medals will be up against the Mick Price trained Eximius again and has a good chance of turning the tables after only getting beaten by a neck at Flemington.
Trainer Peter Snowden will saddle up two of the main threats with Tatra and Proverb who finished second and third behind the Bart Cummings trained Lunar Rise in the Group 3 $250,000 Inglis Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at Flemington on November 3.
Tatra heads the Guineas’ market at $4.80 just ahead of Lunar Rise at $5 with Proverb the only other runner under double figures at $5.50 with Gold Medals the next best at $11 and Eximius at $12.