Victorian colt The Barrister has proven he can handle the 1600m of the Group 1 $400,000 Moet & Chandon Champagne Stakes at Randwick on Saturday but the steep rise in class will be his toughest challenge.
The Barrister won over 1500m at Mornington two starts back and then after leading all of the way to take out the Listed $150,000 Adina Apartment Hotels Fernhill Handicap (1600m) at Randwick last Saturday, trainer Jason Warren decided to give him a chance at Group glory.
“The horse has come through Saturday’s run super, he put on a couple of kilos and he is nice and bright under saddle,: Warren said.
“He probably needed the run last Saturday because he did go into the race a bit fresh and he travelled to Sydney really well.”
Tommy Berry takes over from Hugh Bowman in the Champagne Stakes and can see the sharp step up in class as his biggest test.
“He was very impressive winning the Fernhill last week and he was strong at the end of the mile,” Berry wrote in his Sportsman column.
“It was a wet track and he’d probably be better on a drying track if that happens.”
“He ticks all the boxes for me but whether it’s come a bit too quick for him.”
“The race has dropped away a bit this year though and he gets a chance in a Group 1.”
The Champagne Stakes on the last day of the Sydney Autumn Carnival has only attracted a small field of nine two year olds with only three of the juveniles with Group 1 experience.
The top three in the market order, Pasadena Girl ($2.80), Odyssey Moon ($3.80) and Tarquin ($6) all went around at Randwick in the Group 1 $1m Inglis Sires (1400m) on April 6 and are set to clash again.
Odyssey Moon also went around in the Group 1 $3.5m Tooheys New Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on March 21 when he ran eighth to Vancouver before running second to Pride Of Dubai in the Sires.
The Peter Moody trained Pasadena Girl made up plenty of ground in the straight coming from last on the corner to finish fourth in the Sires while Tarquin ran an even race to wind up fifth.
Champagne Stakes market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $2.70 Pasadena Girl, $3.90 Odyssey Moon, $6 Takedown, Tarquin, $9.50 Street Rapper, $12 The Barrister, $17 Mine Two, $34 Rhode Assassin, $101 Reckless Russell.