Pendant Perfect Prelude

Date: 23 Sep 2021

Pendant Perfect Prelude

 

Ray Hickson reports for Racing New South Wales: (photo - Steve Hart)

 

Trainer Jamie Richards is keen for classy mare Entriviere to tick the 1400m box at Rosehill on Saturday and firm up her place as the horse to beat in next month's inaugural $2m The Invitation.

He says the question of whether the exciting five-year-old is worthy of one of the remaining slots in the $15m TAB Everest is up to the slot holders, and the mare's owners, to decide.

Entriviere was a dominant favourite at $2.25 with TAB on Thursday in the Group 2 $400,000 Golden Pendant (1400m), $2.80 favourite for The Invitation and $26 in the TAB Everest.

“As far as I'm aware there hasn't been any Everest interest but at this stage our preference is to stay against her own sex,'' Richards said.

“To stick to the 1400m rather than go up against the heavyweights in the Everest but we've got to get through the weekend.

“She would go into that race as one of the favourites whereas she'd start $15 in the Everest and would find it hard to beat the tough geldings like Nature Strip and Eduardo.”

The star Kiwi made her spring return with a barnstorming first-up win in the Group 2 Sheraco Stakes (1200m) at Kembla Grange two weeks ago, shaking off a setback that may have been a blessing in disguise.

Richards said missing the Toy Show, her planned first-up run back on August 21, allowed his dad Paul, who is overseeing her in Sydney, to take his time with her, barrier trial, and the benefits were seen as she streaked clear in the Sheraco.

“We certainly think she has enough quality to be a Group 1 horse,'' he said.

“I'm glad she was able to put them away. It gives you a bit of confidence as you build into the rest of her campaign. Dad's happy with how she's done since her first-up run.”

When the field was released for the Golden Pendant, Richards couldn't help but lament yet another wide barrier but three early scratchings have already made Entriviere's task easier.

He's going to leave the steering to James McDonald but said she's shown in New Zealand that she can race handier but in an ideal world a repeat of the Kembla map on settling would be perfect.

“Up to 1400m I wouldn't like to see her sitting in the breeze,'' he said.

“She has a very good turn of foot when she is able to relax in a race. We're just hoping for a bit of luck, hopefully we can slot in with a bit of cover midfield and she gets her chance to get home well.

“The only question mark is we've never turned her around in two weeks before, she's always been an immature mare who needs her races spaced. There's no signs at this stage to say that should be a problem.”

Last season's top Kiwi two-year-old Sword Of State finally makes his Australian debut in the Listed $140,000 Petaluma Heritage Stakes (1100m).

He was scratched from the San Domenico last month and has missed a trial which is not an ideal build up when you're giving weight to the likes of Paulele and Home Affairs so Richards is keeping expectations in check.

“He is probably a little bit vulnerable first-up and he has to carry weight because he is a Group 1 winner,'' Richards said.

"It is a nice race to kick him off in, 1100m suits him so we will see how we go.”

Sword Of State has won four of his five starts and Richards said a pass mark would be a top four finish or thereabouts knowing there will be improvement to come.

“There's nowhere to hide anywhere over there you have to be on your game all the time so hopefully he runs up to the mark,'' he said.

“I'd like to see him be competitive in the finish, run top three or four, and if he does that we're on track. And I think he is capable of doing that.”

 

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