Trainer Joseph Pride has confirmed that talented gelding Terravista will make his Listed debut in the Festival Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
Pride revealed earlier in the week that he would wait until Friday before making a decision on whether to give Terravista his second start in seven days, after winning the Time Thief At Darley Handicap (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday, but told Racing Ahead this morning that the son of Captain Rio had thrived during the week and will take his position in the strong field.
“He come through the win really well,” Pride said on RSN.
“It was a decision to be made through the week about whether he would take his place in this field and I couldn’t be happy with what I have seen from him this week.”
Terravista has worked through the grades nicely this preparation, recording three straight wins at Randwick, but will face a much stronger field in the Listed event this weekend; with the undefeated White Sage as well as Group performers Malavio and Strike The Stars set to contest the $100,000 race.
Pride admits that it is a significant step-up in class for Terravista and the four-year-old will be racing over 1500 metres with Glyn Schofield on his back for the first time but the Warwick Farm-based trainer still believes that the promising gelding is good enough to record his maiden black type victory.
“He has got a decent step-up but to offset that he comes down to the limit, with a nice soft draw, and whether he gets rain or not is pretty inconsequential to him,” Pride said.
“I would love to able to keep one of the guys that have ridden him before but Glyn is a great rider and I’m sure that he will be able to adapt to what the horse needs him to do.”
Terravista was ridden right on the pace to win the Time Thief At Darley Handicap last weekend but Pride revealed that he would like to see Schofield position the outright favourite just behind the leading group of horses, which is expected to include White Sage.
“He will be close enough,” Pride said.
“I wouldn’t think that he would be in the first three or four but I would like to see him just behind that leading group.
“I think that ridden like that he is a bit more effective; the other day ridden on top of the speed he didn’t have the same acceleration that he showed the start before when there was a hot speed and he sat back.”
Terravista and White Sage are locked in a firm battle for Festival Stakes favoritism; with Terravista the current punters elect at $3.30, while White Sage is available at a quote of $3.70.