Royal Ascot An Option For Holler

Trainer John O’Shea has confirmed that Holler could be sent to Royal Ascot for the 2015 Commonwealth Cup if he performs well during the 2015 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival.

John O'Shea is considering a Royal Ascot tilt with talented two-year-old Holler. Photo by: Daniel Costello

John O’Shea is considering a Royal Ascot tilt with talented two-year-old Holler. Photo by: Daniel Costello

Trainer Gai Waterhouse revealed last week that she was considering setting unraced colt Cyrus Rocks for the new event on the Royal Ascot schedule and O’Shea told Sky Racing HQ that he is open to the idea of running Holler in the Group 1 event, but admits that a great deal would have to go right for the two-year-old to make the testing trip to England.

“I think that he is good enough and I think that he is the right sort of horse,” O’Shea said.

“He is a big powerful colt, he gets a significant weight relief if he goes to Ascot and he presents as big and as strong as most of their three-year-olds.

“A lot would have to go right here for that to be considered by Henry and the team, but I think he is the right sort of horse.

“We just need to get him off to the races to prove that to be right.”

Holler made his racing debut with a smart performance in the Hyland Race Colours Plate (1100m) at Royal Randwick on January 17, but O’Shea elected to send the Commands colt to the spelling paddock rather than press on to the Group 1 Golden Slipper in order to save the juvenile for a winter campaign in Queensland.

O’Shea said that he plans to send Holler to Queensland for races like the Group 2 BRC Sires Produce Stakes (1350m) at Doomben on May 23 and the Group 1 J.J. Atkins (1600m) at the same venue on June 6, but he said that the wet weather in Sydney and the subsequent abandonment of a number of barrier trials has forced him to alter his plans.

“Ideally we would like to trial him on Friday and give consideration to running him at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday week,” O’Shea said.

“We felt that it was in the best interests of the horse to just bring him on a bit steady.

“He is a big, brut of a fellow and he showed that he had a nice bit of ability.

“He has developed tremendously with the spell and we had sufficient enough two-year-olds at that stage that were going to compete in the Golden Slipper and we thought that he might have been one, but the opportunity presented that we could split them up, give him a bit of time and target the Brisbane winter with him.

“He has appreciated the time, but we are just having a bit of trouble getting some continuity to his program.

“We desperately need to get a trial into somewhere and get him off to the races.”

About The Author

Thomas Hackett

Thomas is a passionate and opinionated racing journalist and punter who has been obsessed with horse racing since he backed Saintly to win the 1996 Melbourne Cup. An international racing enthusiast, he has his finger on the pulse of racing news not just from Australia but all around the world.

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