Jockey Hugh Bowman is confident that Speediness is capable of winning the 2014 Emirates Stakes at Flemington tomorrow, despite his poor effort in the Group 2 Crystal Mile (1600m) at Moonee Valley on October 25.
Speediness started his 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign with a fast-finishing fourth behind Chautauqua in the Group 3 Bobbie Lewis Quality (1200m) at Flemington on September 13 before he failed to handle a firm track in the Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on September 28.
The Testa Rossa gelding returned to his best form in the Group 1 Toorak Handicap (1600m) at Caulfield on October 11 and he was only narrowly denied a maiden win at the highest level of racing by Trust In A Gust, but he failed to finish the race off when well-backed in the lead-up to the Crystal Mile.
Bowman admits that Speediness was disappointing in the Crystal Mile, but he told Racing Ahead this morning that he believes the seven-year-old is capable of winning what is an open edition of the 2014 Emirates Stakes if he is able to return to his best form.
“He is a consistent horse and if he can run up to his run at Caulfield when I rode him two starts ago I think he can definitely win,” Bowman said.
“I thought he was a little bit under par at Moonee Valley last weekend and we would like to see him reproduce that Caulfield run.
“He has had a few Group 1 placings and he is certainly good enough to win the race.
“He reminds me of the horse I won the Emirates on a few years ago Wallstreet, if everything falls into place he can win, but he will be winning by a short margin.”
Speediness is yet to record a race win in his nine race starts at Group 1 level, but he has been one of the most consistent performers in handicaps events over1400 metres and a mile in the past 12 months.
The veteran gelding finished a luckless fourth in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes last year and flew home late to finish fourth in the Toorak Handicap before he finished less than half a length behind Boban in the Emirates Stakes.
Speediness returned to Group 1 level with a credible performance in the Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Royal Randwick on March 15 and he looked as though he was finally going to deliver trainer Colin Scott a maiden Group 1 victory in the George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 29, but he was run down in the final stages by Irish galloper Gordon Lord Byron.
Speediness is currently available at 2014 Emirates Stakes odds of $14, while Contributer ($5) remains favourite from Lucky Hussler ($7), Hooked ($7) and Bull Point ($7.50).