Trainer Nigel Blackiston has revealed that talented mare Suavito will return to the races in either the 2016 Orr Stakes or the 2016 Futurity Stakes.
Suavito took out the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) and Group 2 Blamey Stakes (1600m) during the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival last year before she finished a credible seventh in the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m), but she underwent knee surgery and was forced to miss the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival.
Blackiston told Racing Ahead this morning that Suavito had taken no harm from the injury and after she took part in her first jump out this morning, he believes that she has returned from her stint in the spelling paddock as a much stronger horse.
“She had a nice soft jump-out and she came through with flying colours,” Blackiston said.
“On her appearance, she is definitely a bit bigger and stronger after the extended break.
“The way she trialed this morning, showed that she has certainly come back in great order.”
Suavito will either return to the races in the Group 1 Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February or the Group 1 Futurity Stakes (1400m) at the same venue a week later and Blackiston believes that there is many potential options for the Thorn Park mare after that point.
Blackiston said that the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 12 and she could head to Sydney for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m) or the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf Stakes (1600m) – as long as the wet weather stays away from Sydney.
“She will trial again in the coming weeks and then we will decide whether she starts in the Orr Stakes or the Futurity, which she won last year,” Blackiston said.
“We’ll put in a nomination for the Australian Cup and then you’ve also got the Sydney Championships and races like the Doncaster and Queen of the Turf to consider as well,” he said.
“She ran terrific in the (Doncaster) last year on a bottomless track where she finished seventh and never handled the going at all.
“Obviously we’ve got to be very wary as I think she can handle a certain amount of softness in the track but when it’s as heavy as it was last year she doesn’t get through it all and Sydney’s notoriously been heavy and extremely wet the last few years.
“We’ll keep her here as long as we can and if Sydney’s dry then we’ll head up there.”
Suavito is currently available at 2016 Australian Cup odds of $11 with Ladbrokes, while Criterion ($7) is a narrow favourite from Preferment ($8), Bow Creek ($9), Our Ivanhowe ($9) and Perfect Reflection ($10).