Newcastle-trained stars Le Romain and In Her Time could clash for the first time in the group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) on March 24 after exhibition gallops on their home track.
Premier Newcastle trainer Kris Lees sent three-time group 1 winner Le Romain around between races alongside stablemate Valeria at the Newmarket Handicap meeting on Friday. Fellow Newcastle trainer Ben Smith earlier had In Her Time, a three-time group 2 winner, in an exhibition gallop with Corey Brown in the saddle.
Le Romain was clocked at 34.6 seconds for his last 600m and 10.12 for his last 200m. In Her Time went 32.67 and 10.8.
Lees was undecided about a first-up assignment for Le Romain, which is on the comeback from colic surgery to repair a twisted bowel, but said a probable path was to start in $700,000 The Galaxy before racing in the TJ Smith Stakes with the All Aged Stakes as his main target.
Le Romain, which was second in the All Aged last year, has not raced since finishing 11th in the group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes on September 16 but the Hard Spun gelding trialled twice last month.
In Her Time is also on the return from injury after damaging a hoof when second in the group 1 Manikato Stakes last October. The five-year-old mare, which has placed three times at group 1 level, will trial over 1000m at Newcastle on Wednesday.
Smith was pleased with In Her Time’s work at Newcastle last Friday and believed Tuesday’s trial “should just top her off nice for Saturday week”.
“She just needs a bit more conditioning work, she’s close to the mark but not quite there yet,” Smith said.
“Come Saturday week she should be spot on.
“We’re really happy with. She’s bigger and stronger this time in and she seems to be holding her weight well.”
As for coming up against Le Romain for the first time, Smith said: “It would be nice if Le Romain goes in it. We might get a bit of weight relief.”
Smith, meanwhile, is excited about the prospects of two-year-old filly El Dorado Dreaming at Warwick Farm on Wednesday. Third on debut at Tamworth last October, El Dorado Dreaming will have her second start fresh from a Gosford trial win and with Brown aboard.
Racing NSW reports: Newcastle trainer Jason Deamer offers a value push for recent winners to be ridden by in-form Noel Callow and Aaron Bullock at Tuesday’s Cessnock meeting.
Deamer has four runners, including Zigamore (Bullock) and promising Muswellbrook maiden winner Swift Arrival (Callow).
Bullock has five solid prospects, while widely-travelled Callow has four mounts.
Deamer’s five-race winner Zigamore carried 62kg for a tenacious win for Bullock on a heavy 8 at Taree and is well placed with a half-kilo less at Cessnock in a benchmark 65 (2125m).
“He’s tough and so honest, a proven weight carrier and Aaron gets the best out of him,” Deamer said. “He’ll appreciate out to the 2000m.”
Lightly-raced Choisir filly Swift Arrival contests a class one (900m) for Callow, a four-time group I winner, who rode overseas after winning the Melbourne premiership through 2000-2003.
“We’ve given her an easy time,” Deamer said.
“She’s done really well. Nice progressive filly, her maiden win was strong and she can take the next step.”
Latin Light, to be ridden by Bullock, resumes in a class one (1350m) and emphasised her potential when winning a Cessnock maiden by 2.7 lengths in September. She was then turned out after failing up in grade at Newcastle.
“She’s done plenty of work to get her ready. She’s a decent chance for us in a suitable race.”
Deamer’s filly, Diamond Deluxe, will be among the favourites for Callow in the 1350m maiden after being placed on debut at Taree three weeks ago.
“She’s a nice progressive filly,” he said. “She’s taken improvement from her first start, she did run into a smart one up there and she’s drawn in a suitable maiden.”