Shooting To Win will return to racing in the 2015 All Aged Stakes at Royal Randwick this weekend and co-trainer Paul Snowden is confident that the talented colt is back to his best ahead of the Group 1 event.
Shooting To Win stamped himself as one of the most talented three-year-olds in the country when he took out the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but he was unable to return to winning form in both the Group 2 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill Gardens on February 21 and the Group 1 Royal Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Royal Randwick on March 7 before he tired late to finish fifth in the Group 1 George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 21.
Team Snowden reported that Shooting To Win had displayed back soreness coming out of the George Ryder Stakes, but Snowden told Racing Ahead that the three-year-old had responded well to treatment for the minor issue and he is confident that the Northern Meteor colt can return to his best form in the All Aged Stakes this weekend.
“We feel that he is back to his best otherwise we wouldn’t be running him,” Snowden said.
“His first two runs this time against his own age he had some little excuses, but obviously third-up in the Ryder we couldn’t have been more happy with the horse and he looked like he was just going to absolutely blow them away at the 300 and his run ended at about 150 out, which isn’t like him at all.
“Once we went out and found the back issue that we have been on to ever since it was quiet pleasing to find that there was something wrong with him and it explained the run.
“He was treated pretty much as soon as he got home with acupuncture, chiropractor and massage therapy every single day.
“It is quite a common injury amongst race horses because it is basically where all your drive comes from.
“Touch wood he has come back with flying colours and he did a little bit of work this morning and he seems just as good.
“If there was any risk at all we definitely wouldn’t be running him on Saturday.”
Shooting To Win showed that he was ready for a return to racing when he finished second behind Zaratone in a barrier trial at Warwick Farm last Friday and he impressed onlookers with a strong piece of work at Royal Randwick this morning.
Snowden said that Shooting To Win had worked well within himself at trackwork this morning and gave every indication that he was ready for his return to racing.
“We have a great deal of confidence in the horse and I really do think that he will run well on Saturday,” Snowden said.
“He basically worked over 1000 and he ran home his last 400 within himself, but he needs to still be doing a little bit of work because he is a gross colt, that has to have the work kept up to him.
“That is why we couldn’t go into a Doncaster because with the back issue and trying to work the horse it is not a good recipe, so we had to let that settle down and let him get over it.”
Shooting To Win is currently available at 2015 All Aged Stakes odds of $5 with Ladbrokes and it is on the third line of betting behind Chautauqua ($3.20) and Lucky Hussler ($4.80).