High quality sprinting mare In Her Time will bypass the 2018 Melbourne Autumn Carnival and be set for the Group 1 $2.5m Darley T J Smith Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on April 7, day one of The Championships.
Newcastle trainer Ben Smith was forced to leave In Her Tim in the paddock longer than expected to give her extra time to recover from a hoof injury that saw her scratched from the Group 1 $1m Darley Classic (1200m) at Flemington on the last day of the 2017 four day Melbourne Cup Carnival.
“The Melbourne autumn might come up a bit too quick unfortunately,” Smith told Racing.com.
“We had to leave her out in the paddock a little bit longer than we expected due to her foot, which was the issue that forced us to scratch her from the Darley Classic last November.
“So we’ve had to give her extra time for her hoof to grow out.
“She’s come back 30kgs heavier than what she was racing at last prep and she looks terrific.”
In Her Time will now not be ready to run in any of the Melbourne Autumn Carnival Group 1 sprints, the $750,000 Black Caviar Lightning (1000m) at Flemington, the $500,000 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield or the $1.25m Lexus Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington.
Smith has planned to give In Her Time one run before the T J Smith Stakes and will choose between running the five year old mare in the Group 1 $700,000 The Galaxy (1100m) or the Group 3 $150,000 Birthday Card Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on March 24.
“The plan is she’ll likely have one run before the Championships, either in the Galaxy or the fillies and mares race on that day,” Smith said.
“Then it’s a fortnight into the TJ Smith Stakes.
“Redzel is obviously the best sprinting horse in the country, but other than that we’ve been beating or been highly competitive against the rest of them.
“She’s definitely a high-end sprinting mare, but a Group 1 has eluded her so far.”
In Her Time is yet to win at Group 1 level but has performed well with three placings from five attempts at the highest level.
In Her Time was beaten narrowly by Impending when second in the Group 1 $1.5m Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben during the 2017 Brisbane Winter Carnival and then a fortnight later finished third behind Tycoon Tara and Prompt Response in the Group 1 $500,000 Sky Racing Tattersall’s Tiara (1350m) at Doomben again.
The 2017 Spring Carnival began in great style with In Her Time winning the Group 2 $500,000 Santos Coffee Premiere Stakes (1200m) and the Listed $500,000 Sydney Stakes (1200m) both at Randwick before a photo finish second to Hey Doc in the Group 1 $1m Ladbrokes Manikato Stakes (1200m) at The Valley on October 27.
“It’s not the be all and end all (to win a Group 1), but she deserves it. She’s been luckless in a few,” Smith said.
“As long as she’s been racing well we’ll be happy, it’s just a privilege to race to her.”
The Everest winner Redzel heads up the betting for the T J Smith Stakes at $6 at Ladbrokes.com.au while In Her Time is marked as a $17 chance.
Early betting for the 2018 T J Smith Stakes at Ladbrokes.com.au: $6 Redzel, $9 Chautauqua, $11 Vega Magic, $13 Brave Smash, Menari, $15 Merchant Navy, $17 In Her Time, Nature Strip, She Will Reign, $21 English, $26 Clearly Innocent, Impending, Invincible Star, Trapeze Artist, Viddora, $34 or better the rest.