By John Hourigan
Trainer Nick Olive by-passed the Lightning Ridge Stakes with Calypso Choice and, on the same day, produced the filly for a first-up win over 1100m at Bathurst. It is hard to line up Bathurst form but the $30,000 purchase can do no more than win. Though the filly’s dam, Cap Juluca (NZ), never raced, all seven of her foals have won.
Final race fields for the Seppelt Black Opal Stakes race meeting were released earlier this morning with impressive fields across the eight race program. Highlighted by the $275,000 Seppelt Black Opal Stakes in which there is a capacity field of 14 plus 2 emergencies. The Black Opal Stakes field includes the recent Lightning Ridge Plate winner Klammer from the Gerald Ryan stable, Gerald also has Lucky Raquie engaged for the race.
Progressive filly American Time was completely luckless in the Lightning Ridge Plate last start and Gratz Vella is confident she does deserves her place in Sunday's Black Opal Stakes.
Having created quite the impression on debut when saluting easily at Canberra back in January, American Time would go on to face very different circumstances at her latest effort when never really clear in the straight.
Gerald Ryan will be looking for his second Black Opal Stakes success at Canberra on Sunday as he unleashes a two pronged attack on the feature race.
Having taken out the race with Paint in 1996, Ryan who traditionally has a good record with two-year-olds has accepted with Klammer and Lucky Raquie for the listed race (1200m), both coming off decent form.
Klammer made the trip down the highway and tasted success in the lead up Lightning Ridge Plate (1000m) just two weeks ago and Ryan is confident he is heading in the right direction.
El Roca is a surprise acceptor for the Listed Canberra Guineas on Sunday with Trent Busuttin to make a call on the colt’s next start in the next 48 hours.
El Roca has been accepted for both the Group 3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m) at Warwick Farm and the Listed Canberra Guineas (1400m) on Sunday.
Either race will act as a crucial lead up for El Roca into the Group 1 Randwick Guineas (1600m) on March 15 after he was scratched from last Saturday's Hobartville Stakes in well documented circumstances.
By JOHN HOURIGAN
An outstanding field of 21, headed alphabetically by the Gary Nickson-trained Alpha Miss, has been nominated for the $275,000 Seppelt Black Opal on Sunday.
Sydney’s leading trainers, Chris Waller, Peter Snowden, Team Hawkes, Gai Waterhouse, Gerald Ryan, Clarry Conners and Jason Coyle, and Brisbane’s Liam Birchley are well represented with 13 youngsters while five Canberra trainers are prepared to do battle.
Ultra consistent mare Jacinta will tackle stakes company at her next start with the Matthew Dale trained galloper set to contest the Listed National Sprint.
Sent out the well supported favourite at Canberra on Sunday the daughter of Commands proved successful in living up to her impressive recent form when saluting in the sixth event.
Settling up on the speed, Jacinta quickly hit the front early in the straight before holding off a late charge to score narrowly from the Luke Pepper trained Zuccherina.
Canberra based trainer Matthew Dale continued his very handy record in Victoria with Chelsea Hotel landing the prize at Sandown Park on Wednesday.
Having failed to run up to market expectations at her last two starts at both Randwick and Canterbury, Dale elected to travel south with his daughter of Dylan Thomas.
"Sydney is heating up at the moment with the carnival fast approaching, it's getting quite strong so we had a look down here," Dale said.
By John Hourigan
The Gerald Ryan-trained Klammer is likely to come up against either the unbeaten Memorial or the well-bred Ghibellines from the powerful Darley team in the $275,000 Seppelt Black Opal (1200m) on March 9.
Klammer could not have been more impressive in winning the Lightning Ridge 2YO Plate (1000m), the traditional Black Opal preview at Canberra on Sunday.