Jockey Craig Newitt believes that Lankan Rupee is the best horse in the 2015 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes field and he is confident that the star sprinter can record his fifth win at Group 1 level at Flemington tomorrow.
Newitt has been riding in Singapore since before Christmas, but he received permission from the Singapore Turf Club to return to Australia and maintain his association with Lankan Rupee.
The leading hoop told Sky Racing HQ that he has been following the progress of Lankan Rupee very closely ahead of the start of his autumn preparation and could not be happier with the reports that he has received about the son of Redoute’s Choice.
“He looks like he has come back exceptionally well and I haven’t heard one bad report about him,” Newitt said.
“We will go there tomorrow at Flemington very confident that he can produce and be very hard to beat.
“From all reports he has had the perfect preparation, which is good to hear because I know ability wise he is the best horse there.
“Hopefully everything goes smoothly and if gets a nice run in the race I am sure that he will be very hard to beat.”
Lankan Rupee has been ridden on the speed in the majority of his race starts during his racing career to date and he led from start to finish in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but trainer Mick Price has made it clear that he wants to see the five-year-old settle in the early stages of his races this preparation.
Newitt believes that the 2015 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes will be an interesting tactical affair and he expects to settle Lankan Rupee behind Deep Field before finishing over the top of the unbeaten sprinter in the final stages of the race.
“I had a chat to him a couple of weeks ago and the plan is to try and ride him a little bit more conservatively especially against the better ones,” Newitt said.
“It is going to be a little bit tricky in the Lightning with only six runners and he will look to get a nice run just off the back of Deep Field and I am sure that his ability will do the best.
“It is a small field, but it is going to be an intriguing race.
“I’ve only go to give my bloke a free run and he is the proven horse there.”
Lankan Rupee is currently available at 2015 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes odds of $2.50 and is on the second line of betting with Ladbrokes behind Deep Field ($2.15).