Trainer Peter Robl is thrilled with the condition of veteran sprinter Ninth Legion and believes the gelding will be very hard to beat in Saturday’s Listed Winter Stakes (1400m), should the track conditions at Rosehill Gardens continue to improve.
Ninth Legion has returned to blistering form for Robl this campaign and will be seeking a third-consecutive stakes win on Saturday, having taken out each of the Listed Eye Liner Stakes (1350m) and Listed Civic Stakes (1350m) at his two most recent starts.
Robl told Racing Ahead that he cannot fault the condition of the Fastnet Rock gelding, citing the possible condition of the Rosehill racing surface as the only possible query leading into the Winter Stakes 2016.
“He’s in terrific form, he’s done very well since his last start and I can’t fault him at all,” Robl said.
“More so than anything, we set him for the Eye Liner knowing that he is a classy galloper on his day. It wasn’t much more than a BM90 race so we thought that even if he wasn’t at his top, he’d still be more than competitive in a race like that.
“I think that was a turning point for him. He won that race, he won it with confidence and it certainly brought him on mentally.
“We’ve had lovely weather here for the last four or five day, so I’m hoping it will get back to something like a five; that would be ideal.
“We’ll just play it by ear and make a decision on the morning whether he runs or not. It would probably want to be the better side of a six.”
Ninth Legion began his racing career under the guidance of Anthony Cummings in 2012; passing through the stables of Team Hawkes before arriving in Robl’s care at the conclusion of his 2015 campaign.
Ninth Legion has claimed eight race wins and a further ten minors through forty-three career starts, for nearly $1 million in prize money.
Drawn in barrier 9 of 10, Ninth Legion has been charged with carrying a race-high 60kgs in the Winter Stakes but will be partnered by last-start hoop Sam Clipperton.
Ladbrokes Australia are currently offering Ninth Legion at 2016 Winter Stakes odds of $4.50.