Trainer John O’Shea has confirmed that Savvy Nature will not contest the 2014 The BMW Stakes at Rosehill Gardens this weekend and will go into the Australian Derby without another lead-up run.
Savvy Nature was included in the nominations for both the Group 1 The BMW (2400m) and Group 2 Tulloch Stakes (2000m) that will be run on Saturday, but after accessing the Savabeel gelding’s performance in the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m), O’Shea has decided that the three-year-old would have a week off before running in the Australian Derby at Royal Randwick on April 12.
“After watching his work this morning I’m sure he doesn’t need another run before the Derby,” O’Shea told TVN this morning.
“I told the owners the Rosehill Guineas would be the fork in the road for the horse and I thought he was very strong over the last 100 metres.
“I don’t want to compromise his chances in the Derby by running this Saturday as well.”
Savvy Nature started his 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign with a third place finish behind Dissident and Atlante in the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 1 before finishing seventh behind Dissident in the Group 1 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) on March 15 – a performance that O’Shea described as only fair.
The three-year-old stepped up to 2000 metres for the first time, since his dominant win in the Group 2 Mitchelton Wines Vase (2040m) during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, in the Rosehill Guineas and settled into a nice rhythm in the middle of the field.
He was blocked for a run at the top of the straight, but found clear running at the 250 metre mark and worked home strongly to finish fourth behind Criterion, Thunder Fantasy and Teronado.
Savvy Nature will be stepping up to 2400 metres for the first time since he failed to fire when 4th in the Group 1 Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on November 2 last year, but has given every indication this preparation that he will appreciate the step-up in trip.
O’Shea is chasing his first win in the Australian Derby after finishing third with Kingdoms in 2013, fourth with Zabrasive in 2010 and fourth with Primus in 2006.