The Ranvet Stakes 2014 field is dominated by Fiorente and It’s A Dundeel, but leading Sydney trainer Chris Waller is hoping that one of his three runners can score an upset win in the Group 1 event at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
The Waller stable has a strong record in the Ranvet Stakes in recent years, winning with Foreteller in 2012 and finishing second with Rangirangdoo in both 2010 and 2012, and Waller is hoping that he can maintain that form when Foreteller, Hawkspur and Moriarty contest the race this weekend.
“I guess it will be a little battle of tactics; Fiorente and It’s A Dundeel will be looking out for each other and hopefully one of ours can just be a sleeper ready to attack,” Waller said.
“I couldn’t be happier with all three, there work has been perfect, and they are in fighting condition ready to go.”
Foreteller has performed consistently since returning to the races in the Group 1 Orr Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on February 8 and ran home strongly to finish third in the Group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 8.
The Dansili gelding took out the Ranvet Stakes last year and has the opportunity to join the likes of Theseo (2009 and 2010), Tie The Knot (2000 and 2001), Sky High (1962 and 1963), Lough Neagh (1936 and 1937) and Limerick (1927 and 1928) that have won the Group 1 event in back-to-back years.
The Waller stable have been bullish about the chances of Moriarty during the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival and the imported galloper has performed well in three starts this campaign; finishing eighth in the Group 2 Expressway Stakes (1200m), third in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes (1400m) and fourth in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on March 8.
Jockey Hugh Bowman elected to push forward on Moriarty in the Chipping Norton Stakes and he tired in the final stages of the race, but Waller is confident that the Clodovil gelding will be suited by the step-up to 2000 meters.
“Moriarty hit the front at the top of the straight, but couldn’t quiet go on with it over a mile,” Waller said.
“He is up to a more suitable distance and I think that he is in career best form, which he will need to be.”
Hawkspur started his autumn preparation with a poor performance in the Orr Stakes, finishing at the tail of the field, but bounced back with a third place finish behind Boban and It’s A Dundeel in the Chipping Norton Stakes.
Waller was delighted with the effort of Hawkspur in the Ranvet Stakes and said yesterday that he believes the son of Purrealist is close to his best form ahead of the Group 1 event.
Foreteller is currently available at Ranvet Stakes odds of $10, while there has been a sprinkling of support for Hawkspur ($11) and Moriarty ($16).