Co-trainer Michael Hawkes believes that Real Surreal is in excellent condition ahead of her Group 1 debut in the 2014 Coolmore Classic and is confident that the talented mare will be a factor in the finish of the $600,000 event at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
Real Surreal made her debut for the Hawkes stable in the Group 2 Light Finger Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on February 22 and finished a promising fourth before finishing second behind Thump in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm on March 8.
Hawkes admits that the 2014 Coolmore Classic field is packed full of quality, but is confident that Real Surreal is an excellent chance of scoring her first race win since she took out the 2013 edition of the Magic Millions Classic (1200m).
“It is a very strong race,” Hawkes told TVN.
“It is her third run in this time and her last start run was outstanding.
“She probably just peaked a little bit before the end, but she is getting up to a journey that I think will suit her.
“She worked great this morning and I can’t fault her.
“She will have a home track advantage, which is good, and she gets a nice big track which I think is what she is appreciating.
“Last start at Warwick Farm she ran a super race and probably just peaked, but I think on Saturday if everything goes well she is going to be right in the finish.”
Real Surreal joined the Hawkes Stable before the start of the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, but she did not make an appearance at the races; with the Hawkes team electing to take a patient approach with the daughter of Real Saga.
Hawkes is confident that the patient approach has paid off and feels that Real Surreal is now at peak fitness ahead of the 2014 Coolmore Classic at Rosehill Gardens this weekend.
“The biggest key is the fitness,” Hawkes said.
“She hadn’t raced for a long-time before her first-up run, but going forward she has done everything right.
“She is just a real casual performer and she has the goods.
“Her fitness levels are really getting up there now, where they should be, and the Group 1 is what we have been chasing with her.
“She is right on song for Saturday.”
The Hawkes team is yet to taste success in the Coolmore Classic, but has gone close on a number of occasions; finishing second with Forum Floozie (2005) and Hello Darl (1997) and third with Mnemosyne (2006), Forum Floozie (2004) and Shame (1996).