The betting market for the 2013 Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) is set to get a serious shake-up on Saturday when a number of the leading contenders clash in the Group 3 The Run To The Rose (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
The Run To The Rose field is headlined by Darley colt Sidestep who resumed with an unlucky fourth behind Va Pensiero in the Group 3 San Domenico Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill last Saturday.
Sidestep was checked badly and lost ground with three hundred metres left to run in the race but finished very strongly when he found clear running in the final stages.
Trainer Peter Snowden told TVN that he believes the interference cost the son of Exceed And Excel the race and he is confident the three-year-old will return to the winners circle when he steps up in distance with blinkers on this Saturday.
“The interference cost him dearly, it took all the momentum out of him,” Snowden said.
“If he gets through there’s no doubt in my mind that he wins.
“To finish as close as he did was a good effort.”
Sidestep will face stiff competition in The Run To The Rose this weekend with undefeated colt Eurozone set to make the step-up to Group level for the first time in his racing career.
Eurozone recorded victories at Canterbury and Rosehill at the end of the 2012/2013 Racing Season and stepped up in class to score an impressive win over Dissident and Dowdstown Charlie in the Listed The Rosebud (1200m) at Royal Randwick on August 10.
Co-trainer James Cummings told RSN earlier this month that the son of Northern Meteor is on track for the Golden Rose and still has plenty of improvement ahead of him.
Eurozone was not the only son of Northern Meteor to be included in the nominations with Zoustar set to begin his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign in the Group 3 event.
Zoustar was one of the most impressive two-year-old performers during the 2013 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival, recording a strong victory in the Group 2 BRC Sires Produce Stakes (1350m) before finishing a narrow second behind Romantic Touch in the Group 1 J.J. Atkins (1600m).
Trainer Chris Waller is yet to decide on the ultimate spring target for Zoustar but included the classy colt in the nominations for the Golden Rose, Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) and Group 1 Cox Plate (2040m).
San Domenico Stakes winner Va Pensiero, David Payne-trained Criterion and Queensland-based Into The Red were also included in The Run To The Rose nominations.