First Seal has reportedly returned to work in a typically smart fashion this time, and trainer John Thompson is confident the classy mare is forward enough to win Saturday’s Group 2 Tramway Handicap (1200m) at Royal Randwick first-up.
First Seal has been a strong and consistent performer for Thompson through her eleven start career so far; posting four wins and five minors undoubtedly highlighted by success in the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) at Randwick during her 2014 Spring Carnival campaign.
Having been scratched from the final field of the Group 2 Warwick Stakes (1400m) a fortnight ago after suffering a minor foot abscess, Thompson is confident the 2015 Tramway Stakes figures as a far-better first-up option and believes the mare has taken great benefit from a Rosehill gallop over the weekend.
“We had an exhibition gallop at Rosehill on Saturday – we weren’t there to break any records, just a nice day out to get the blood pumping and fitness up a little, and it’s done the job,” Thompson told Racing Ahead.
“Her work here this morning, she worked over the six furlongs on the Kensington track with a mate and has come through it well, so full steam ahead to Saturday.
“It’s a set weights and penalties race but it is an easier race than the Warwick Stakes which we were planning to go first-up in, but she’s up to it.
“She runs well here at Randwick, the 1400m first-up will only help her and her foot issues seem to behind us now.
“Tommy Berry will ride her and we’ll judge each race as we go along.
“He’s ridden her in a few gallops now and getting to know her, and I don’t want to swap and change riders all along so hopefully we can get someone and stick with them.”
Returning this year for a close second in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) on February 14th, First Seal progressed to success in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) before finishing a close second in each of the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) and Group 1 Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m).
The 2015 Tramway Handicap final field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday.
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