Karuta Queen burst onto the scene in early 2011 and started off the year as probably the two-year-old to beat.
She ran out of steam by the time she reached the Golden Slipper but certainly showed enough talent to make her one to watch when she returns as a three-year-old.
Trained out of Queanbeyan in Canberra by Neville Layt, she’s returned from the spelling paddock and will commence her training once more ahead of spring carnivals in Sydney and Melbourne.
She had a full two months off after the Golden Slipper and Layt couldn’t be happier with the way she’s returned.
“She has spelled enormous,” he said.
“I am very happy with the way she has returned, she looks terrific and hasn’t changed at all.”
In her Golden Slipper run she went to a big lead early on but as soon as they rounded the bend she was gobbled up indicating she had just run out of puff.
It followed a disappointing start before that in the Black Opal where she finished second after being sent out as a huge odds on favourite.
Despite this it was still a massive carnival for Karuta Queen and she netted just under $1.5 million with her Magic Millions wins in Wyong and on the Gold Coast.
“By the time we got to the Golden Slipper she was a bit flat and had had enough and she wasn’t quite 100 per cent for the Black Opal,” Layt said.
“But this little filly, anything up to 1000 or 1100 metres they will know she is there in any race she competes in.”
He is yet to decide on an exact campaign for the spring but she could start up in the beginning of August in a Group 3 race like the San Domenico at Randwick.
“We are looking at the San Domenico along with Group races in both Sydney and Melbourne, we will just have to wait and see,” he said.
Obsequious won that event last year and then managed to win the Group 2 Light Fingers, so that gives a possible early route through the carnival.
Despite her best work coming early on as a two-year-old Layt has no reservations about the type of filly she is going to be a year further into her career.
“She will make a tremendous three year old I think, she just looks so happy and will improve out of sight as a three-year-old.”
She’s certainly been a special horse for the Canberra based trainer who has been able to build a brand new block of stables with the prize money earned by Karuta Queen.
It will see his operation expand considerably from the 20 horses he currently has in work.