Jockey Blake Shinn believes that triple Group 1 winning mare Streama is ready for the 2014 Breeders Classic after impressing with a strong trackwork performance at Warwick Farm this morning.
Shinn piloted Streama to victory in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, but told TVN this afternoon that the Stratum mare felt better than ever ahead of her return to racing in the Group 2 Breeders Classic (1200m) this weekend.
“She worked exceptional,” Shinn said.
“She has come back really well and I’d say better than she has ever felt.”
Trainer Guy Walter was tossing up whether to run Streama in the Group 1 Black Caviar Lightning Stakes (1000m) at Flemington on Saturday or the Breeders Classic at Royal Rosehill Gardens and the veteran trainer made the decision to keep the five-year-old in Sydney throughout her autumn campaign.
Shinn is happy to be able to partner Streama in the Breeders Classic and believes that she is an excellent winning chance in the race, despite having to carry the top weight of 59kg.
“I think Streama is well weighted, even with the 59kg,” Shinn said.
“It is never easy to lump that weight and win first-up but she is going well.
“If we can get a nice barrier I think she will be very hard to beat.”
Streama has performed very consistently in her six first-up starts, but has, so far in her career, been unable to start a preparation with a victory.
She debuted with a narrow second behind Cape City Flyer on debut in the Grand Pavilion Handicap (1100m) at Canterbury in 2011 and started her three-year-old campaign with a narrow third behind Pane In The Glass and Florentina.
The classy mare was once again narrowly denied victory at the start of her 2012 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival campaign, finishing second behind Sea Siren in the Group 2 Light Finger Stakes (1200m), and was far from disgraced when third behind champion mare More Joyous in the Listed Sheraco Stakes (1200m) at the start of her spring preparation.
Streama produced another consistent performance when second behind Skytrain in the Group 3 Southern Cross (1200m) just over a year ago and she was unlucky not to end her first-up drought when second behind Veyron in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) in August of last year.
Shinn is chasing his first win in the Breeders Classic after missing the placings with Absolutelyfabulous (eighth in 2008) and Acquired (ninth in 2010).