Shamal Wind will make the trip to England for the 2015 King’s Stand Stakes during the Royal Ascot meeting and trainer Robert Smerdon is happy with the progress that the mare is making ahead of what will be the final race start of her career.
Shamal Wind started her 2015 Melbourne Festival Of Racing campaign with an impressive victory in the Listed W.J. Adams Stakes (1000m) at Sandown on January 26 before she produced the best performance of her racing career to date to record a fast-finishing win in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 28.
Smerdon sent Shamal Wind for a freshen-up following her W.J. Adams Stakes and the veteran trainer told Racing Ahead that the Dubawi mare had taken plenty of benefit from her stint away from the stable before returning to trackwork a fortnight ago.
Shamal Wind will make the trip to England on June 4 having completed the majority of her preparations for the King’s Stand Stakes, but Smerdon admits that how the five-year-old handles the testing trip to Europe could dictate her chances in the Group 1 event.
“She is good,” Smerdon said.
“She had a freshen-up and went to Peter Morgan’s place for a couple of weeks on the water walker and a bit of r and r in the paddock during the day.
“She has been back at Caulfield for a few weeks, is building up and all is good.
“We will just have her ready as good as we can before she gets on the plane.
“We are only there ten days before she runs, so it will be pretty straightforward I think.
“Travel issues have to be considered and some horses just have issues with travel sickness and the management of that is fairly well documented, but they have to come through it.
“She has a fairly good constitution herself, but Exceed And Excel got a throat infection and he didn’t get to the races, so we are hoping that we can get through all of that.”
Smerdon confirmed that Shamal Wind will be retired following the King’s Stand Stakes and will be served by a stallion in the northern hemisphere.
Shamal Wind has the chance to join Choisir (2003), Takeover Target (2006), Miss Andretti (2007) and Scenic Blast (2009) as Australian-trained winners of the King’s Stand Stakes when she contests the race on June 16.