Premier trainer Chris Waller primed to regain autumn spotlight at Randwick   Leave a comment

Premier trainer Chris Waller primed to regain autumn spotlight at Randwick

OFF & RACING: Don’t miss The Championships!

OFF & RACING: Don't miss The Championships!

GAI Waterhouse had her usual Golden Slipper fun, John O’Shea did his best to paint Rosehill Gardens Godolphin blue — now it’s time for premier trainer Chris Waller to finally wake from his Sydney autumn slumber and dominate The Championships.

Australia’s top trainer has been unusually quiet the past month when it comes to local Group 1 racing, with 27 runners contesting nine majors for just five placings. That for a man who leads Waterhouse 9-5 in Group 1 wins this season.

But that could change on Saturday, with Waller to start ATC Australian Derby favourite Preferment, as well as two-time Doncaster Mile winner Sacred Falls in the $3 million Randwick feature.

Waller told The Daily Telegraph it was Doncaster day 2011 when he learnt a lesson about Group 1 expectations.

“I went to bed before the Doncaster that year, thinking, ‘we’ll win this race tomorrow’, with three good chances in Triple Elegance, Danleigh and Syreon,’’ Waller said. “But it rained all night, it was a wet track, and we didn’t get sighted. I remember walking away that day feeling so despondent.

Sacred Falls and Royal Descent ran the quinella in last year’s Doncaster.

Sacred Falls and Royal Descent ran the quinella in last year’s Doncaster. Source: Getty Images

“Seven days later, we won the Sydney Cup (with Stand To Gain) and the Queen Elizabeth Stakes (My Kingdom Of Fife) when we weren’t expected to.

“That’s racing. You have good days and bad days, but you can never walk away from a racecourse thinking you own it because things can change very quickly.’’





Preferment went the closest to winning a Sydney Group 1 when just nosed out in the Rosehill Guineas. He won the VRC Derby in the spring and, as Waller said, “it was a matter of getting him back to the level he was at in the spring, and he looks like he’s there’’.

Sacred Falls must lump 58kg topweight in the Doncaster, while Waller likes Royal Descent, who ran second to Sacred Falls last year.

A third runner, three-year-old Kermadec, is given a hope, but is second emergency and sweating on a start. Should he miss out, he’s likely to be saved for the All Aged Stakes in a fortnight.

“Sacred Falls was only fair last start, but he’s fit, he won with a bit up his sleeve last year, and that’s why I’m hoping he can carry that extra weight this year,’’ Waller said.

Preferment and Volkstok’n’barrell will do battle again in the Derby.

Preferment, left, will carry Chris Waller’s hopes in the Derby. Source: Getty Images

“Royal Descent carries the same weight as last year and is coming off a terrific run. But like Sacred Falls (barrier 20), she’s drawn wide (18).’’

Always Allison contests the Group 1 Sires’ Produce on Saturday with Joao “The Magic Man’’ Moreira to steer.


Waller’s office has a wall full of photos of his Group 1 wins. There’s room for two more before he’ll need to find more space. He joked he might need that new wall come Sunday.

Either way, it’s likely to be filled by the end of The Championships with Cox Plate winner Adelaide to run in next Saturday’s $4 million Queen Elizabeth Stakes, Catkins to start favourite in the Queen Of The Turf, and Winx and Ballet Suite live ATC Oaks hopes.

The sleeping giant might finally awake this Sydney autumn.

$3 million DONCASTER MILE (1600m)

Randwick, Saturday 5.10pm

1. SACRED FALLS (NZ) Chris Waller Zac Purton 20 58kg

2. HAPPY TRAILS Paul Beshara Damien Oliver 2 56.5kg

3. WORLD ACE (JPN) Yasutoshi Ikee Nicholas Hall 16 55.5kg

4. REAL IMPACT (JPN) Noriyuki Hori James McDonald 21 55kg

5. MORIARTY (IRE) Chris Waller Tye Angland 11 54.5kg

6. ROYAL DESCENT Chris Waller Joao Moreira 18 54kg

7. NINTH LEGION Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes Dwayne Dunn 8 52.5kg

8. PUCCINI (NZ) Peter & Jacob McKay Craig Newitt 17 52.5kg

9. COSMIC ENDEAVOUR Gai Waterhouse Tim Clark 15 52kg

10. HALLOWED CROWN Bart & James Cummings Tommy Berry 23 52kg

11. HOOKED John P Thompson Dom Tourneur 12 52kg

12. IT’S SOMEWHAT (USA) John O’Shea Craig Williams 4 51.5kg

13. DIAMOND DRILLE Gai Waterhouse Thomas Huet 22 51kg

14. PORNICHET (FR) Gai Waterhouse Kerrin McEvoy 13 51kg

15. DESTINY’S KISS Joseph Pride Sam Clipperton 9 51kg

16. ARABIAN GOLD David Vandyke Chad Schofield 5 50.5kg

17. LEEBAZ (NZ) Michael, Wayne & John Hawkes Glen Boss 3 50.5kg

18. RUDY Helen Page Luke Tarrant (a) 6 50.5kg

19. SUAVITO (NZ) Nigel Blackiston Corey Brown 1 50kg

20. PLUCKY BELLE Peter G Moody Ms Kathy O’Hara 10 50kg

21e. SWEYNESSE John O’Shea Sam Clipperton 7 50kg

22e. KERMADEC (NZ) Chris Waller Glen Boss 19 50kg

23e. AOMEN (IRE) Anthony Cummings — 14 50kg

24e. MALAVIO Steve Englebrecht — 24 50kg


$2 million AUSTRALIAN DERBY (2400m)

Randwick, Saturday 3.50pm

1. PREFERMENT (NZ) Chris Waller Damien Oliver 10 56.5kg

2. VOLKSTOK’N’BARRELL (NZ) Donna Logan Craig Williams 5 56.5kg

3. MONGOLIAN KHAN Murray Baker Opie Bosson 1 56.5kg

4. HAMPTON COURT Gai Waterhouse Joshua Parr 6 56.5kg

5. HAURAKI John O’Shea James McDonald 9 56.5kg

6. QUICK STRIKE Chris Waller Tye Angland 3 56.5kg

7. OMEROS John Sargent Joao Moreira 2 56.5kg

8. RULING DYNASTY Bart & James Cummings Tommy Berry 4 56.5kg

9. BIKILA Pat Carey Chad Schofield 8 56.5kg

10. BROGUE (NZ) Steve Englebrecht Christian Reith 7 56.5kg


Originally published as Waller primed to regain spotlight


Posted April 3, 2015 by belesprit09 in Uncategorized

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