Trainer Gerald Ryan has revealed that Snitzerland will return to the races in the 2014 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on February 15.
Snitzerland had an interrupted 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, after recovering poorly following the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on September 27, but Ryan told Sky Racing HQ this morning that he has been happy with the way the Snitzel mare has progressed since returning from the spelling paddock.
“I am pleased with yesterday, the way she looks and the way that she seems to be coming up,” Ryan said.
“She has got a lot stronger and is heavier on the scales.
“She dropped a lot of weight after she pulled up crook at Moonee Valley, but she has put it back on.
“She probably went out at 508kg and she came back at 548kg and she is fit at 525kg at the moment.
“She is enjoying what she is doing and we will trial next Tuesday.”
The Black Caviar Lightning Stakes has always been the first-up target for Snitzerland and Ryan confirmed that she will contest the Group 1 event if she comes through a barrier trial at Rosehill Gardens next Tuesday in good order.
“It has always been the race in mind and at the moment I don’t think that there is any reason to change,” Ryan said.
“We will see how she trials and if we think she is not ready, we will wait until the Oakleigh Plate.”
Snitzerland has performed consistently at the highest level of racing since making her debut as a two-year-old, but has been unable to record a maiden Group 1 victory.
The talented mare finished second behind Pierro in the 2012 Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) and was far from disgraced when fifth in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) during the 2012 Spring Racing Carnival.
She went into the 2013 Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) at Rosehill Gardens as a clear, favourite after recording a dominant win in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m), but was beaten by a flying Bel Sprinter and she failed to fire when beaten as an odds-on favourite in the Group 1 Robert Sangster Classic (1200m).
Snitzerland will be Ryan’s first runner in the Lightning Stakes since her sire Snitzel finished seventh behind Takeover Target in the 2006 edition of the race.