Daily News Wrap

6 min read

Emotional return for Artist

The tragic circumstances of two key figures in the Trapeze Artist (Snitzel) story will be front of mind for all involved when the star sprinter resumes in the G2 Expressway S. at Rosehill on Saturday according to trainer Gerald Ryan.

Tye Angland, who rode Trapeze Artist in his three Group 1 victories, received serious spinal injuries in a fall at Sha Tin in late November, while owner Bert Vieira's wife Gai remains hospitalised and continues to make slow progress from a horrific car accident last September.

Tye Angland

Ryan told RSN that he expects that the emotions surrounding the Angland and Vieira families to be close to the surface when Trapeze Artist resumes on Saturday.

“It would be good if he could win and helped give them a boost. Gai I was told is improving and a week doesn’t go by without a phone call or text to Tye,” Ryan told Racing Pulse.

While he did not win in his three-start spring campaign, Trapeze Artist was runner-up in The Everest after which Ryan decided to send him to the paddock.

"He had ten days in the water walker after his run in the Everest and then a three-week spell after while we decided not to head to Melbourne for the Spring. He has been back in work since November 15,” Ryan said.

“He has had a good trial and a very good jump-out and he is as fit as he can be heading into a race first-up."

“It might be a small field tomorrow but between them they have won $18M in prizemoney which is crazy,” Ryan said.

“It might be a small field tomorrow but between them they have won $18M in prizemoney which is crazy,” - Gerald Ryan

After Saturday, Trapeze Artist heads to the G2 Apollo S. before going to the G1 Canterbury S. and then four weeks to the G1 TJ Smith S.

Sunlight shines in jumpout

Superstar filly Sunlight (Zoustar) stepped up her preparations for her return in the G1 Lightning S. with an easy jumpout win at Werribee on Friday.

The G1 Coolmore Stud S. winner was dominant in her most serious hitout of her campaign and trainer Tony McEvoy told Racing.com he is delighted with where she is at.

"Scary to think she might be going better, but the signs are excellent," - Tony McEvoy

"Scary to think she might be going better, but the signs are excellent," he said.

"He (Luke Currie) said she was more relaxed in the trial to him. He said he could have come back behind the horse that was second, where in the old days that wouldn't have happened."

"I think she's probably furnished and matured a little bit more, which is only going to make her better."

"She looked the Sunlight of old to me. She dominated the trial and looked really composed in her action. It was really enjoyable to watch."

"She may have grown a little bit. She has strengthened even more and that is incredible to say because she has always been big and strong."

Jedastar heads to Lightning

Caulfield trainer Lloyd Kennewell will head to the G1 Lightning S. with 2-year-old filly Jedastar (I Am Invincible).

Kennewell flagged the idea after Jedastar was beaten in last Saturday's G3 Blue Diamond Preview at Caulfield, with the filly to carry just 44kg under the weight-for-age conditions of the race.

A winner down the Flemington straight on debut, Jedastar will be ridden in the Lightning by Chris Caserta in the $750,000 sprint.

Jedastar pictured as a yearling

Bugatty (Dreamscape) and Boomwaa (Mutawaajid) were the most recent 2-year-olds to run in the race, finishing eighth and 10th respectively behind Snitzerland (Snitzel) in the 2014 edition.

Colin Hayes won the race with filly Desirable (Without Fear {Fr}) in 1976 while Clever Zoe (Pompeii Court {USA}) was the most recent 2-year-old filly to run in the race, finishing second to Schillaci (Salieri {USA}) in the 1993 Lightning S.

Payne pair to improve from debuts

Trainer David Payne's opinion of his 2-year-old pair in Saturday's G3 Canonbury S. at Rosehill differs from the market assessment.

Crown Affair (Snitzel) and Deep Chill (Wandjina) represent Payne in the opening race, with bookies giving Crown Affair little hope off his debut fifth at this track two weeks' ago.

Payne believes Crown Affair, who has passed in short of his $1m reserve, can make significant improvement at his second start.

David Payne

"It was going to take a lot for John (Cordina – owner) to sell him,” Payne told Racenet. “He’s a lovely horse and has improved a lot since his first run. He’s sharpened right up."

“I’d still prefer the race to be a bit further but you’ve got to have a crack.”

Deep Chill is shorter in the market, but Payne feels he will need a much longer distance to be at his best.

“Deep Chill is a nice horse as well but will be better over further. He’s out of an Oaks winner,” he said. “I’m favouring Crown Affair to beat him home on Saturday.”

Derby winner Vin ready to return

Co-trainer Murray Baker feels last year's G1 New Zealand Derby winner Vin De Dance (NZ) (Roc de Cambes {NZ}) is fully recovered from back injury which ruin his spring campaign.

Vin De Dance had just two starts in Australia in the spring before returning home and will be first up in Saturday's G3 Platinum Homes Taranaki Cup at New Plymouth.

Baker, who trained with Andrew Forsman, said the 4-year-old will require a couple of runs to hit his peak, but was progressing well.

"He is pretty good and we like to think he is on the way back,” Baker said. “He looks great and has been working well, he might just require a race or two to get back into it."

“I’d like to think if Vin De Dance could show a bit of form we would take him to Sydney because he is a good stayer at his best.”

Star set for busy autumn

Group 1 winner I Am A Star (NZ) (I Am Invincible) has a wealth of top-flight racing on her agenda this campaign, but will kick off at Group 3 level at Caulfield on February 9.

Trainer Shane Nichols said the 5-year-old mare, the winner of nine stakes races, had returned in great order.

“She’s had a fairly untroubled preparation. We have had a little issue with her feet in the past, but they are in pretty good nick at the moment,” he said.

We are approaching our sixth or seventh racing campaign and I am as happy with this one as I have been with the others that have been successful."

“There are three Group Three mares races heading into the All-Star Mile, if we get the votes, or the G2 Sunline and then maybe up to Sydney for the G1 Coolmore (Gr.1, 1500m)."

“We might slip a G1 Sangster and a G1 Tatts Tiara in there. She’s going to have a fairly heavy preparation, with a bit of travelling, so maybe seven runs, possibly eight."

“We will just be guided by how she is going.”