Quality Te Akau two-year-olds Yourdeel and Equinox may have just entered their spelling paddocks, but trainer Jamie Richards is already looking forward to their return and is eyeing some rich Classic spoils in the spring with the pair.
Yourdeel took out the Gr.1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Palmerston North on Saturday, adding a second win at elite-level to his record.
“He’ll have six to eight weeks off now, we’ll give him a good break,” Richards said. “We’ll get him back in and sit down with Chris (Rutten), Rod Preston and John Norwood and work out what we want to achieve.
“He looks like a 2000 Guineas (Gr.1, 1600m) horse to us, but he might be good enough to go to Australia as well.”
Although Equinox finished midfield in the juvenile Group One, Richards believes the talented son of Exceed and Excel has a big future ahead of him.
“I think he is a very exciting horse, but 1400m is just a bit too far at this stage of his career,” he said.
“I thought he was in it until halfway down the straight and probably just knocked up the last 50m.
“He has gone for a well-deserved break and we look forward to having him back and turning him into a really exciting three-year-old as well.
“He shows us in track work that he’s pretty exciting. He’s a high-price yearling ($750,000) and has got a lovely pedigree and is a very good type. He can only continue to improve and we look forward to the future with him.”
Meanwhile, Richards will travel across the Tasman to watch fellow stable juvenile Probabeel work ahead of her tilt at the Gr.1 Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on Saturday.
The daughter of Savabeel finished sixth in the Gr.3 Magic Night Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on a Heavy10 track last month and Richards is hoping for some better footing on Saturday for the Karaka Million 2YO (1200m) winner.
“She works on Tuesday morning on the grass at Randwick,” Richards said. “We are happy with her and looking forward to hopefully seeing a little bit of drying in Sydney this week.
“I think the step up to 1400m will really suit her.” – NZ Racing Desk