Terravista has returned to trackwork ahead of the start of his 2015 Spring Racing Carnival campaign and trainer Joe Pride believes that the Group 1 winner can go to another level this preparation.
Terravista stamped himself as one of the best sprinters in the world when he took out the Group 1 Darley Classic (1200m) during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, but he was unable to replicate that performance in the autumn and he returned to the spelling paddock after finishing third in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m), third in the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) and a disappointing 12th in the Group 1 All Aged Stakes (1400m).
Pride told Racing Ahead yesterday that Terravista had returned to the stable yesterday and he was thrilled with how the Captain Rio gelding looks ahead of his spring preparation.
“He only just came back into work yesterday,” Pride said.
“He had a good two months break, which I think was important.
“As these good horses do, he rolled from carnival to carnival for a few seasons and eventually it takes its toll.
“We saw last season that he really wasn’t at his best, but in three runs he still managed to run two Group 1 placings, but he wasn’t where he should be.
“He looks really big and he has put on a stack of weight.
“He looks magnificent and he is lightly raced, so there is good reason to think that we haven’t seen the best of him yet.”
Terravista started his spring campaign with impressive victories in the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m) and Group 2 The Shorts (1100m) in Sydney before he was sent to Melbourne for the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) and the Darley Classic.
Pride said that Terravista will follow a similar path during the 2015 Spring Racing Carnival before potentially heading to Hong Kong for the Group 1 Hong Kong International Sprint (1200m) in December.
“There is no rush at all,” Pride said.
“I just wanted to get him ready for a few runs here in Sydney, possibly The Shorts and the Premiere or one of those races before we bring him down and run him in the race at the Valley and then down the straight again.
“Hong Kong is a possibility this year and it is definitely an option for this horse if he is at his best.
“He is a top class sprinter and he is definitely the best horse that I have ever put a saddle on.
“I am hopeful that he can maintain that for the next few seasons.”
Terravista has the chance to join River Rough (1983 and 1984), Planet Ruler (1989 and 1990) and Black Caviar (2010 and 2011) as the only back-to-back winners of the Darley Classic.