Trainer Chris Waller is confident that Specific Choice can record his first race win in over a year when he contests the Rosehill Gardens Handicap (1500m) in Sydney tomorrow.
Specific Choice returned to the races for the first time since being gelded in the TAB IPhone App Handicap (1400m) at Royal Randwick on January 18 and fought home bravely, but was denied victory by Gai Waterhouse-trained Almighty Charge.
Waller said that a lack of racing fitness cost Specific Choice in his first-up start and he believes that the son of Lonhro is well-placed to breakthrough for his first race win since he took out the Inglis Bonus (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens in November of 2012.
“He was good first-up,” Waller said.
“He was a touch on the soft side having that big gap between runs and I think that he fought the race out very strongly.
“I think that he can improve on that and be very hard to beat.”
Specific Choice has not been particularly popular with punters throughout his racing career and did plenty wrong when he was beaten as a well-backed favourite in the Turner Freeman Lawyers Handicap (1400m), the Cellarbrations Tamworth Store Handicap (1500m) and the Blackwoods Bosch Handicap (1500m) during his spring preparation.
Waller is confident that the racing manners of Specific Choice has improved since he has been gelded and believes that he will develop into a consistent galloper.
“1500m shouldn’t be a problem and now as a gelding I think that you will see a genuine racing pattern from him,” Waller said.
“He will be very hard to beat.”
If Specific Choice is successful on Saturday it will continue the red-hot form of owners Dynamic Syndications, who picked up a double at Royal Randwick last Saturday.
Talented filly Define stamped herself Group 1 contender with a tough win over Mr Jackman and Aspen in the Australian Turf Club Handicap (1300m), while Darren Smith-trained Dream Choice stepped up in class to win the Benchmark 80 Handicap.
Define has been included in the nominations for the Group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) at Flemington on March 1 and Waller believes that she has the talent to perform well in major races up to a mile during the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival.
Specific Choice ($3.70) is currently battling for favouritism in Rosehill Guineas betting markets with Team Hawkes-trained Longeron ($3.70), while there has been plenty of support for Reply Churlish ($5) who is chasing his fifth straight win.