Gerald Ryan is desperate to deny Darley yet another two-year-old victory in 2011 and is looking at all options with his star juvenile Hot Snitzel.
Riding tactics are coming under heavy scrutiny with jockeys fighting a constant battle to settle the horse in the field.
According to Ryan the best place for him to be is back in the pack as opposed to his last start at Doomben when he challenged for the lead on the turn.
“In the Inglis he got a long way back and ran home really strongly after running into heaps of trouble,” Ryan said.
“In the Kindergarten he ran third after being stopped in his tracks at the top of the rise at Randwick.
“I reckon he would have won that race had he got a clear run.”
His first Brisbane run was on the Gold Coast when he shot out of the barriers easily the best of them and settled near enough to the front of the field.
It was a tactic that worked well and he won the Ken Russell Memorial by a huge margin.
Next start at Doomben though things didn’t go his way and he could only manage a third placing in the Champagne Classic.
It was a race Ryan says he held concerns for because of the track but of more concern is surely is erratic performance in the early part of the race.
“Because of the small Doomben circumference I always thought he would be vulnerable around that track,” Ryan said.
“He raced on the speed and was caught three deep coming around the corner.
“He almost got in at one stage but another horse got up on his inside and pushed him wider.
“He only just went down to Free Wheeling and the other horse (Double Impact).”
Despite that all reports are that he’s pulled up well and track work is going better than ever.
“He’s bright and well and his work last Saturday and on Tuesday at the Gold Coast was first class,” he said.
Once again Ryan believes that Darley has the main competition in the race with Free Wheeling the pick over stablemate and last start winner Benfica.
“I had a good look at Free Wheeling in the Doomben enclosure and he looked to have improved a lot since the day he ran second at Canterbury (May 7),” Ryan said.
“There’s no doubt he’ll be further improved and is the one to beat.
“I’m considering riding Hot Snitzel a lot quieter so he can run home and if I do change tactics I’ll inform stewards tomorrow morning.”