With first-up form at Caufield over 1400m and in Group 1 races, there was always a little pressure on Suavito to perform on Saturday in the Group 2 PB Lawrence Stakes.
Add the talk of Damien Oliver’s choice of rides, it is no surprise to read some interesting comments about Suavito’s performance in running 6th.
Firstly, to clarify, Damien accepted the ride on Suavito this Spring a few weeks ago, but then switched to Miss Rose De Lago. But remember he did the same thing last preparation which gave Luke Currie the opportunity to win so well on Suavito in the Group Orr Stakes. Many Jockeys do this regularly, as is their option – sometimes with success, sometimes not.
Which brings us to Saturday’s Lawrence Stakes and Michael Walker’s return as her rider, in place of the unlucky and highly respected Luke Currie. We were pleased with Suavito’s run beaten only 2 lengths in a solid Group 2 event. Soon after the race, it looked as though Suavito was a little plain and below her usual standard early in the straight. Those just ahead of her – Entirely Platinum, Miss Rose De Lago and Jacquinot Bay – kicked better than her, only momentarily, but enough.
A good comparison can be made with Entirely Platinum, who settled just one length or so in front of Suavito and finished one length in front in third position. Their splits between the 600m and 400m, and 400m and 200m were almost identical, but with Suavito closing her final 200m in a stronger 12.12 seconds.
We believe the race pattern favoured those in 3rd-6th positions, evidenced by the winner and placegetters all coming from this range. Perhaps we could have held that position that Entirely Platinum was put in. But easy to say in hindsight.
Nigel and the connections have decided to head towards the Group 2 Data Tan Chin Nam Stakes (officially named the Feehan Stakes) at Moonee Valley on 3 September. She is likely to bypass the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m).
Learning from her run on Saturday, and from her second-up performance last preparation when out-sprinted a little by Turn Me Loose in the Group 1 Futurity (1400m), a step up to 1600m and staying in Group 2 company suits better.
The Data Tan Chin Nam Stakes leads nicely into a variety of races, with a nice space to the Group 2 Stocks Stakes for mares at Moonee Valley, a track she has performed well at in the past.
It means a return clash with Miss Rose De Lago and Damien, but we are up for it! If her performances warrant it, the Group 1 Myer, Group 1 Longines, Group 1 Emirates and/or Group 2 Matriarch Stakes are options thereafter, as is the breeding barn.