Trainer Robbie Griffiths believes that the four weeks between runs will be ideal for talented mare Angelic Light heading into the 2014 Winterbottom Stakes at Ascot next weekend.
Angelic Light showed that she was capable of mixing it with the best sprinters in Australia when she finished an extremely close second behind Lankan Rupee in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on October 24, but Griffiths elected not to run the daughter of Holy Roman Emperor in the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on Saturday in order to save her for the Winterbottom Stakes.
Griffiths told Sky Racing HQ that Angelic Light has previously performed well with her runs spaced and he said that he was happy to be taking the five-year-old into the Winterbottom Stakes fresh.
“We found with her before that she can handle a gap between runs and bounce off that really well and actually run in particularly good order there,” Griffiths said.
“We did that before with her when she ran second in the Sangster before she had a year off with injury.
“We did that heading into the Manikato, she had four weeks between runs, and she was very effective running so well last start.
“When we were faced with the situation of going two weeks Darley into two weeks Winterbottom, knowing that she hasn’t flown before, we thought that the combination of a Darley run and a interstate trip would be too taxing and she could get to the Winterbottom without any energy left.
“We made the decision that we would choose one of the two and with her form more evident around a corner we thought that we would stick to the formula of having four weeks between runs and stick to the Winterbottom.
“We are really happy with the way that it has played out and hopefully she can hold her form and do us proud in Perth.”
Angelic Light finished second behind Platelet in the 2013 edition of the Group 1 Robert Sangster Classic (1200m) at Morphettville in April of 2013, but was kept out of racing for over a year due to injury.
She returned to racing with a fast-finishing third in the Listed Carlyon Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on August 23 before she stamped herself as a sprinter to watch with an upset win over Lankan Rupee in the Group 2 McEwen Stakes (1000m) at the same venue on September 6.
While Angelic Light has only recorded the one win from four starts during her 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign, Griffiths has been thrilled with the form of his star mare and he hopes that form will hold up in the Winterbottom Stakes.
“She has been terrific all preparation,” Griffiths said.
“She rose to prominence when winning in the McEwen, but I think she lost no admirers when she only ran fourth of five in the Moir; we drew the widest and were only really beaten a margin that we had to cover in extra ground.
“She followed up in the exciting finish in the Manikato when she was only beaten a short head and that form has been franked with Terravista in the Darley.”
Angelic Light is currently available at 2014 Winterbottom Stakes odds of $3.70 and is a clear favourite with Ladbrokes Australia.