Cox Plate winner Winx and stablemate Press Statement look set to clash in the Group 1 $1m George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Winx is trying to stretch her unbeaten run to eight after winning both her Autumn Carnival starts in the Group 2 $250,000 Optus Business Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on February 13 and in the Group 1 $600,000 Precise Air Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 27.
The Street Cry mare proved to be the best weight for age horse in the country during the 2015 Melbourne Spring Carnival when she scored a runaway four and three quarter lengths win in the Group 1 $3m Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley.
The Chris Waller trained glamour mare has carried that form into the Autumn and showed on Tuesday morning at trackwork that her recent runs haven’t taken the edge off of her.
“Winx galloped over 1000m and recorded some good sectionals over the concluding stages,” Waller said.
“She certainly pleased (jockey) Hugh (Bowman), who was aboard this morning.”
Bowman, who is the regular rider for both Winx and Press Statement will stick with the Cox Plate winning mare in the George Ryder Stakes.
The premiership winning jockey was aboard Press Statement for his first up Autumn Carnival win in the Group 2 $400,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill on February 20 and when he was an unlucky second as a short prized favourite in the Group 1 $1m Girvan Waugh Randwick Guineas (1600m) at Randwick on March 5.
Bowman also rode Press Statement in trackwork this morning and reported that the three year old has come through his Randwick Guineas run in fine shape.
“He has come on nicely since his last start,” Bowman said of Press Statement.
“He will certainly provide good competition for Winx on Saturday.”
Waller is likely to have three runners in the George Ryder Stakes with Hong Kong based Zac Purton booked to ride Kermadec.
Kermadec ran third to Japanese galloper Real Impact in the last year’s George Ryder Stakes before going on to win the Group 1 $3m The Star 150th Doncaster Mile (1600m) at Randwick on the first day of ‘The Championships’.
The two times Group 1 winner has had one run back from a spell for a third to the John O’Shea trained Holler in the Group 1 $500,000 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on March 5.
Waller has also nominated three year old Counterattack for the weight for age George Ryder Stakes.
Winx has been installed the $1.70 favourite for the George Ryder Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au ahead of Press Statement at $4.80 and Turn Me Loose at $5.50.
George Ryder Stakes market order at Ladbrokes.com.au: $1.70 Winx, $4.80 Press Statement, $5.50 Turn Me Loose, $9 First Seal, Kermadec, $18 Le Romain, $31 Bull Point, Counterattack, Happy Clapper, Hucklebuck, $61 Tinto.