Southern Speed To Make Caulfield Return

By: Ryan Clark
January 25th, 2012

Southern Speed makes her racing return tomorrow afternoon in the Listed John Dillon Stakes at Caulfield.

The Caulfield Cup winning mare is back on the site of her incredible Group 1 victory last year and co-trainer Leon Macdonald says she’s a chance to get another in tomorrow’s event.

This is despite a massive 60kg top weight and the fact she’s starting up over a mere 1400m journey.

Still though, Macdonald says she’s been successful over the trip before and he’s quietly confident of her chances against this field.

“It makes it very tough, obviously its not her best distance these days,” he said.

“She won the Vanity over 1400m… she’s the class horse in the field.”

Few could argue that statement either and despite a big field of 13 there’s nothing that’s as proven at the top level as Southern Speed.

Given the size of the field there’s a good chance the pace will be true and that may just allow her to wind up past some tiring horses over the closing stages.

She has the draw to do it and from gate two she might not even need to settle all the way at the back.

“She’ll get a nice run form there and I’m sure she’ll be running on strongly on the line,” Macdonald said.

All this being said the fact is she’s a long way from her peak and this is really just to get her going for bigger things later in the carnival.

“She’s got to start somewhere and this is the race that fitted din best with her program,” he said.

“After that we go to the Orr Stakes and then go to the George Ryder before the Australian Cup.”

The trainer says punters should wait until the coming weeks to judge her although even then things are going to be tough.

“Whatever she does tomorrow she’ll improve on, having said that I think she meets Black Caviar in the Orr so we won’t be too confident there will we,” he said.

Southern Speed may be continued up through the Sydney Carnival as well providing she maintains her good form.

“After the Australian Cup providing she’s run well she’ll running the Ranvet and then the BMW,” he said.

She has the ride of new dad Craig Williams tomorrow who picks her up in tremendous shape.

“She’s definitely got stronger as she’s got older, she’s a big mare, in good condition,” he said.

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