Big race jockey Tommy Berry anticipates the step up to the 2000m of the Group 1 $500,000 Moet & Chandon Spring Champion Stakes at Randwick on Saturday will suit his mount Swear.
Berry hops back on Swear after Christian Reith rode the Team Hawkes trained colt into sixth place behind Veladero in the Group 3 $200,000 Schweppes Gloaming Stakes (1800m) at Rosehill on September 24 after settling well back in the field.
At his previous start Berry was in the saddle and had Swear racing on the pace before the Redoute’s Choice colt went on to win the Group 3 $125,000 Daily Telegraph Ming Dynasty Quality (1400m) at Randwick on September 3.
“Second up (Christian Reith) was forced to go too far back on him on a track where they weren’t making up a heap of ground. He has been working very well since and the team is happy with him and I think the 2000m will suit him,” Berry told The Daily Telegraph.
Swear has drawn the outside barrier in the eleven horse field and is rated as a $6.50 chance for the Spring Champion Stakes with Ladbrokes.com.au and Berry is giving him a great chance of finding the winner’s stall again with the winkers on for the first time.
“From his work we couldn’t be happier and I wouldn’t want to be on anything else in the race,” Berry said.
“Obviously Prized Icon was very unlucky last start and he is probably the one to beat for mine but this bloke has just so much upside and I think he will be even better in six months’ time in the autumn.”
Berry gets the feeling that Swear will continue to improve as he steps up in distance and a good performance in the Spring Champion Stakes could see him head to Melbourne for the Group 1 $1.5m AAMI Victoria Derby (2500m) at Flemington on October 29.
“He is a deadset stayer and if he runs well in that, he could head towards the Derby,” Berry said.
The David Vandyke trained Yankee Rose heads the market order for the Spring Champion Stakes at $2.60 with Ladbrokes.com.au and is coming off a last start second to Global Glamour in the Group 1 $500,000 Sydney Airport Flight Stakes (1600m) at Randwick last Saturday.
Prized Icon from James Cummings stable is on the second line of betting at $3.90 and beat Swear home last start when third in the Gloaming Stakes.
Market order for the Spring Champion Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2.60 Yankee Rose, $3.90 Prized Icon, $6.50 Swear, $9.50 High Mist, $11 Veladero, $12 Honeywine, $20 Retaliation, $21 Tumultuous, $51 Ready Fire Aim, $81 Khartoum, $201 Hand It In.