Ryan’s legacy

Snitzel king pro­duces a bud­ding star in Me­nari

The Sportsman Weekend - - News - By RAY HICKSON

GER­ALD Ryan is known in most cir­cles as ‘ Mr Snitzel’ and it’s no sur­prise why.

The Rose­hill trainer not only guided the Group 1 win­ning sprinter to race­track glory over a decade ago he’s had a big say in the stal­lion’s suc­cess at stud.

Ryan has to date trained 53 in­di­vid­ual win­ners ( from 88 run­ners) by Snitzel to a to­tal of 121 wins, earn­ing prize­money of $10,327,990.

How Ryan came to train Snitzel in the first place was one of those chance oc­cur­rences as owner Damion Flower looked to par­lay the good for­tune the pair had with AJC Derby win­ner Clan­galang.

“We picked out three colts we liked and they turned out to be Gon­ski, Stra­tum and Snitzel,” Ryan said.

“Be­cause of his pedi­gree, we thought prior to buy­ing (Snitzel) if he could gal­lop he’d make a stal­lion.

“To get to the heights he’s got to you couldn’t pre­dict but he was get­ting bet­ter as he got older.”

Snitzel was Aus­tralia’s cham­pion sire of 2016/17 in what was an amaz­ing sea­son for the Ar­row­field res­i­dent.

He equalled Dane­hill’s sin­gle sea­son record of 26 stakeswin­ners, set a new Aus­tralian prize­money ($16.1m), was the first to sire a Group 1 two-year-old tri­fecta since 1982 and pro­duced record num­ber of two-year-old win­ners with 35.

Ryan heads to Rose­hill to­mor­row hop­ing Snitzel colt Me­nari can be­gin de­liver on the prom­ise he showed at two when he re­sumes in the Listed $150,000 Smith­field RSL Rose­bud (1100m).

Me­nari car­ried a fair bit of hype into the au­tumn but fell vic­tim to wet tracks and didn’t per­form level Ryan knows he’s ca­pa­ble.

“We couldn’t get a real line on him be­cause he had two starts on dry tracks and won then ran an un­lucky sec­ond to Pariah and his next three were on heavy tracks,” Ryan said.

“He wasn’t hope­less in it but he at his best.

has to stand up as a spring three-year-old and ful­fil his po­ten­tial.”

Me­nari is an im­pos­ing crea­ture.

The colt 16.2 hands and weighs in around 572kg so no won­der he finds it hard to pick up heavy ground.

Ryan has been more than happy with the way Me­nari has gone about his busi­ness this prepa­ra­tion.

Two tri­als have him in fine shape fit­ness wise and he will have no ex­cuses when it comes to the track con­di­tion. Ryan ex­pects not need too many.

“His size is a mi­nus on heavy track but he has his own strength and that’s a plus,” Ryan said.

“He ap­pears to have come up well, he’s a lot more re­laxed. He’s not ag­gres­sive at all and is quite good around the place.

“If you want him to work su­per he will and if you don’t then he won’t.

“His tri­als were solid with­out be­ing over the top, he trav­elled well, he didn’t need to be bot­tomed out.” W hile Me­nari is nom­i­nated for the Golden Rose and Caulfield Guineas, it’s Cool­more Stud Stakes that Ryan feels the colt will be best suited to.

But he’s likely to head to the San Domenico (1100m) on Au­gust 26 be­fore he’s pointed in any par­tic­u­lar di­rec­tion.

Me­nari is the head­line act among Ryan’s quar­tet en­gaged at Rose­hill but he also has spring am­bi­tions for Wash­ing­ton Heights with an Ep­som a pos­si­ble tar­get.

The six-year-old made an im­pres­sive re­turn from a year off the scene and a prepa­ra­tion in Hong Kong win­ning first-up at Rose­hill a month ago.

Ryan said Wash­ing­ton Heights has ap­pre­ci­ated the break be­tween runs and Can­ter­bury Hurl­stone Park RSL Spring Pre­view (1400m) will shape his spring.

“I gave him an easy trial on the course proper and I think we will get idea where we are head­ing with him,” he said.

“Dis­tance wise we won’t be go­ing fur­ther than 1600m with him, even though he’s a half­brother to the Grafton Cup win­ner.

“I’d like see if we can go deep into the spring with him, he’s been in work a long time but I reckon he’s horse that will ap­pre­ci­ate races three weeks apart.

“He could be aimed at an Ep­som but we’ll see how he goes on Satur­day.”

The Pharoah, an­other of the Snitzel stock, ap­pears close to a win and Ryan is adamant the best is still ahead of the four-year-old.

Af­ter chas­ing Ar­beit­sam home two weeks ago, he has an­other chance to break through in the St Johns Bowl­ing Club Hand­i­cap (1350m).

“Ar­beit­sam was too fast, too strong and too solid for us,” Ryan said.

“I was toss­ing up stretch­ing him to 1500m be­cause I think he needs a touch fur­ther but I thought we’d give him an­other go at 1350m.”

Ryan warned not to over­look Mariquita in the Clubs NSW Hand­i­cap (1400m) be­liev­ing she’s also close to a win de­spite hav­ing an in­ter­rupted prepa­ra­tion.

She dropped in dis­tance and pro­duced a strong late burst to run third at War­wick Farm on Au­gust 2 and Ryan said with a soft bar­rier if she gets the breaks she can take hold­ing out. “It was go­ing to be a month be­tween runs and be­cause she’s a gross doer it would be too long for her so I thought it would be a greater ben­e­fit run­ning in a race,” he said.

“She couldn’t keep up but she fin­ished off, she can run pretty good sec­tion­als when she gets a race run to suit.”

Me­nari kicks off his spring cam­paign at Rose­hill to­mor­row and trainer Ger­ald Ryan with Snitzel (inset)

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