The photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Cascadian, along with another former European Best Of Days and the resuming, middle-distance runner Tally run in a G1 Doncaster Mile that retains its reputation as one of Australia’s peak 1,600m races despite COVID-19 restrictions.
For Cascadian (Tommy Berry), the race comes a week after he proved himself a serious contender by winning the G3 Doncaster Prelude at Rosehill, a victory that confirmed the severity of the misfortune at the first two runs of his current campaign.
“It was a great relief to see him deliver last start after the trouble he’d encountered at his previous two,” said trainer James Cummings.
“Sometimes when things like that happen, they don’t deliver when they get the chance, but he did it in great style.”
“He’s a horse who had G1 form in France and who has G1 form here, so he’s thoroughly entitled to be rated among the prospects.”
Best Of Days (Jason Collett), a winner at G2 level in England and G1 level in Australia, is a worthy companion to Cascadian following a sound preliminary when sixth in the G1 George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill two weeks ago.
“He was faced with a very difficult assignment first-up, getting back to last, but he was strong through the line, taking ground of horses like Alizee and Brandenburg,” Cummings said.
“As a G1 winner who will be on an upward curve, he’s in the Doncaster on his merits.”
The international duo is complemented by local performer Tally (Kathy O’Hara) who Cummings isn’t dismissing despite a lack of recent racing.
“He has fresh form, he’s also been placed twice at G1 level, he’s a multiple Stakes winner, and he has no weight on his back,” he said.
The three-year-old Bivouac (Hugh Bowman) comes to the G1 TJ Smith Stakes as the winner two starts back in Australia’s best handicap sprint, the Newmarket Handicap.
“He was dominant in the Newmarket and I remember how he let down in sparkling fashion at this track 12 months ago in the Kindergarten. That is the form he’s capable of producing” said Cummings.
“His finish in the William Reid was not up to his usual standard and I’m of the strong opinion that that track was his undoing. Everything about him in his training between runs has me visualising another ripping performance at Randwick, which is nothing short of what he will need in this year’s TJ Smith. It is a real horse race.”
Trekking (Josh Parr) resumes in the TJ Smith having raced consistently and well last time in work and having won a recent barrier trial.
“He’s got plenty of condition on him as you’d expect and while he might not present as a standout, he is a winning chance,” Cummings said.
“He’ll go to the All Aged Stakes next, but we’re focussed on this race and we’re looking forward to seeing him back here after a tidy effort in his latest barrier trial.”
The Godolphin pair are confronted by a field that includes the brilliant Nature Strip, the five-time G1 winner and defending TJ Smith champion Santa Ana Lane and the classy Pierata.
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