Classy filly Politeness will return to metropolitan racing in the Group 2 Thousand Guineas Prelude (1400m) at Caulfield on Saturday.
Politeness has raced exclusively in the country since returning to the races as a three-year-old, recording dominant victories at both Sale and Seymour.
The daughter of Street Sense will step up in class significantly this weekend and trainer Robert Smerdon is looking forward to see how she handles the intensity of a top quality race as she works towards the Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) and Group 1 Crown Oaks (2500m).
“We have given her the softest options that we can leading into this,” Smerdon said on RSN.
“She needed to learn to race a bit better and we used them as a build-up in terms of fitness.
“She is still on the up and I don’t think she is at her peak just yet.
“She has always shown a lot of raw talent but there comes a level of intensity in the bigger races and we need to see whether she can handle it.
“Obviously we have aims beyond tomorrow but I’m very happy with her at this stage.”
Politeness has been ridden at the tail of the field by jockey Ben Melham in her two previous starts this preparation and Smerdon said that the plan was to do the same from barrier seven in the Thousand Guineas Prelude tomorrow.
“Ben Melham was adamant that she would be more effective that way so we have taken that advice and she seems to be a lot better,” Smerdon said.
“Once she hit the front in both those country wins she has lost a bit of focus and drifted around so we have put winkers on her for tomorrow.”
Politeness is currently on the third line of betting for the Thousand Guineas and is already being spoken about as a leading contender for the Crown Oaks that will be run at Flemington on November 7.
While Smerdon will definitely be taking the filly to Caulfield for the Thousand Guineas on October 12 he is unsure whether Politeness will be able to handle the testing 2500 metre trip of the Crown Oaks.
“I don’t know whether she will get that sort of trip,” the veteran trainer said.
“She has always shown us good ability but whether she will run an Oaks distance remains to be seen.
“She still needs to get out to the 1600 of the Thousand Guineas.”
Smerdon is searching for his second Crown Oaks victory after winning the race with Mosheen in 2011.