The Gai Waterhouse stable has confirmed that More Joyous will turn out in the Group 1 $500,000 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on Saturday and an invitation to race England has been rejected.
The mighty mare recorded her seventh Group 1 victory last Saturday in winning the $2m BMW Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick which also made it seven Doncasters for Waterhouse, equalling he famous father T J Smith’s record.
Tulloch Lodge racing manager Bruce Slade reported that More Joyous had pulled up well and it was all systems go for Saturday.
“She’s pulled up in magnificent order and at this stage she’ll be running,” Slade said.
“It’s going to be a hot race and it will give us a good guide to her ability to run out a strong 2000 metres.”
“We’re keen to find out if our spring target should be the Cox Plate.”
Owner John Singleton has knocked back an invitation for More Joyous to run at Royal Ascot in the Group 1 £250,000 The Queen Anne Stakes (1600m) on June 19 and said that his great mare would be prepared for the Spring in Melbourne after running on Saturday.
“If she wins or runs well then she has a Cox Plate preparation,” Singleton said.
And Singleton has no plans of retiring the five year old to join his herd of brood mares and will continue racing her for possibly another two seasons.
“I can’t see why she won’t run next year or the year after,” he said.
“I’ve got enough broodmares and breeding is a long and boring process.”
“Racing is much more exciting.”
“I’ve never had a horse who has won 18 races let along 17 Group races.”
“I want to see her race.”
Last Saturday’s Doncaster Mile win took her earnings to almost $4m with eighteen wins from twenty-five starts, including seven Group 1 wins.
Saturday’s Queen Elizabeth is shaping up to be one of the highlights of the Autumn Carnival and a preview to this year’s Cox Plate with the clash again of the Peter Moody trained Manighar and Melbourne Cup winner Americain as well as top New Zealand performer Jimmy Choux making an Autumn Carnival appearance.
Slade said that More Joyous would likely to be pressured by Manighar who has been racing in outstanding form with three Group 1 wins from his last three starts for the Moody stable.
“Manighar looks the one to beat and he’ll be the horse we have to keep an eye,” Slade said.
“She’ll get pressured by him like she was by So You Think in the Cox Plate.”
“But she’s jumping out of her skin,” he added.
Big race jockey Craig Williams has been confirmed as the new rider for the David Hayes trained Americain,, taking over from French jockey Gerald Mosse who was widely criticized for his ride on the seven year old when second to Manighar in the Group 1 $2.25m The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill on April 7.