The Gai Waterhouse-trained duo of Nayeli and Valentia have impressed in a barrier trial over 1050 metres at Royal Randwick this morning.
Nayeli and Valentia both contested the sixth barrier trial of the morning and finished well clear from the rest of their rivals, despite being kept under a tight hold by their respective jockeys.
Valentia jumped from the gates strongly and took up the running in the early stages of the trial, while Nayeli was bit slow out of the gates and was forced to do a little bit of work to sit outside her stablemate.
Nayeli finished the stronger of the two rising three-year-olds, but Valentia looked just as impressive and was not asked for an extra effort in the final stages of the barrier trial.
Valentia was making his first public appearance at the races since he finished 12th in the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on April 5 and based on his performance is on track for a strong 2014 Spring Racing Carnival campaign.
The Fastnet Rock colt made his racing debut with a luckless third behind Rubick in the IPhone App Plate (1000m) at Royal Randwick on January 25 and took out both The Ritz Cinema Handicap (1200m) at the same venue on February 22 before scoring his maiden win at Group level in the Skyline Stakes (1200m) on February 22.
Waterhouse is yet to decide on a spring target for Valentia, but the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on November 1 looks likely target for the stallion prospect.
Nayeli was given a lengthy stint in the spelling paddock after failing to fire in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 22 and was having her second barrier trial start after taking out a 740 metre trial at Royal Randwick on June 27.
The More Than Ready filly started her racing career with back-to-back wins in the ATC Membership On Sale Maiden (1000m) at Randwick on January 8 and the Group 3 Chairman’s Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield on February 1; with the Group 1 Golden Rose Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill Gardens on September 13 a potential spring target for the Group 3 winner.
Nayeli is currently available at 2014 Golden Rose odds of $17; with Blue Diamond Stakes winner Earthquake ($5.50) a narrow favourite from Golden Slipper winner Mossfun ($7.50) and Waterhouse-trained Almalad ($9).