A slick gallop by smart two year old Vancouver earlier in the week has boosted his chances in the Group 2 $300,000 UNSW Todman Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday.
The Gai Waterhouse trained Vancouver is on the second line of betting with Ladbrokes.com.au at $3.20 behind the odds on favourite Headwater ($1.80) in the small five horse field but Randwick trackman Nic Ashman can see an upset looming.
Ashman said that Vancouver is usually a sluggish worker on the tracks but his gallop on Monday morning really impressed the clocker.
“The colt is still half a run from his top but his work on Monday was sensational,” Ashman wrote in his Sportsman column this week.
“He worked with Clash Of Clans covering the last 400m in 22 secs and the final 200m in 10.8 secs.”
“That’s a step up from what we’ve been seeing in work as he’s a pretty laid-back customer.”
“But the problem is the race lacks numbers and potentially pace.”
“His biggest plus is the fact this is 1200m at Randwick and Headwater, as good as he is, might be some risk over a genuine 1200m.”
Vancouver has won his only two race starts and in typical Waterhouse style the Medaglia D’Oro colt led all of the way to win the Listed $100,000 NSW Thoroughbred Breeders’ Plate (1000m) at Randwick on October 4 at the start of the two year old season.
Waterhouse then gave the colt a break before resuming in the Group 3 $150,000 Canonbury Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill on January 31 to record his second victory when ridden from back in field.
A three and a half lengths Randwick barrier trial win on February 23 has also keep his fitness levels up and he gets his chance to enhance his chances for the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill in two weeks.
Vancouver is currently on the third line of betting for the Golden Slipper at $6 behind the Team Hawkes trained Headwater at $4.20 and John O’Shea’s impressive Skyline Stakes winner Exosphere at $5.
Waterhouse’s number one jockey Tommy Berry will be taking the mount again in the Todman Stakes and the colt will jump from barrier three in the five horse field.