Leading jockey Craig Newitt is confident that Samaready can produce her best form when she contests the 2014 Newmarket Handicap at Flemington tomorrow.
Samaready returned to the races with a fast-finishing third in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 15 and has generally produced her best performances second-up; scoring dominant victories in the 2012 Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) and the 2013 Group 1 Moir Stakes (1200m).
Newitt told Racing Ahead that Samaready has taken plenty of benefit out of her first-up performance and said that she has trained on strongly ahead of the 2014 Newmarket Handicap this weekend.
“She has trained on really good,” Newitt said.
“Her run the other day in the Lightning was first rate and I think if we get a nice firm track and the rain stays away, we will see the best of her.
“She certainly hasn’t taken a step backwards and all indications leading into tomorrow are great.”
Samaready was forced off he bit in the early stages of the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes, but Newitt believes that the daughter of More Than Ready will have a better chance to settle over the 1200 metres of the Newmarket Handicap tomorrow.
The four-year-old will jump from barrier nine, between Moment Of Change and Mister Milton, and Newitt said that he was happy with the barrier draw.
“She looks like she gets a nice run in the race,” Newitt said.
“There is a bit of speed either side of her and the stablemate is drawn just a little bit wider, so she should get a nice trail into the race.
“She will be very strong late.”
Newitt steered leading Newmarket Handicap contender Lankan Rupee to victory in the Group 2 Rubiton Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on February 8 and Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at the same venue a fortnight later, but opted to partner Samaready in the Group 1 event this weekend.
The in-form hoop has a high opinion of Lankan Rupee and rates the Redoute’s Choice gelding a winning chance, but is confident that Samaready has the edge over her speedy stablemate.
“She would have the wood over him every day of the week,” Newitt said.
“Since he has been a gelding he has gone to a whole new level and I’m sure that he will give me something to worry about halfway down the straight.”
Newitt is chasing his third win in the Newmarket Handicap after winning the 2007 edition of the race with Miss Andretti and last year’s event with Shamexpress.