WASHINGTON AUDITIONING FOR G1 TILT
GER ALD Ryan has Group 1 plans for Washing ton Heights if he per forms to the stable’s expectations tomorrow at Rosehill Gardens.
Washing ton Heights will be out to continue his good form this preparation in the Group 2 $200,000 Shannon Stakes (1500m) af ter returning from a stint in Hong Kong earlier in the year.
It will be his third run this time in af ter a luckless first-up effor t followed by determined win last star at Randwick.
He beat Dawn Wall that day af ter looking defeated inside the final 100m before fighting back late to snatch a win.
Ryan could send him for a spell af ter tomorrow’s run to prepare the Magic Millions, but he has even big ger plans in mind if the six-year-old records consecutive wins.
Ryan believes Washing ton Heights could be his Doncaster Mile horse at The Championships next April.
“The whole idea of going to 1500m with him now is to see where he can go in the autumn,” he said.
“I don’t think it (1500m) will be a worr y because I’ve always thought he’d be a miler. “I think he is (my Doncaster horse).” Ryan said punters shouldn’t worr y about the last place finish of Washing ton Heights the last time he ran over 1600m in the Carbine Club Stakes in 2015 before he went to Hong Kong.
“He pulled up sore af ter his first run at a mile so I don’t think that ’s a true guide. He’s a half-brother to Supply And Demand who couldn’t run 1400m at one point but ended up winning 2400m races,” Ryan said.
Tomorrow Washing ton Heights will take on a small field which will include Dawn Wall, the Chris Waller-trained mare which turned in an eye-catching first-up run the last time they met.
She’s won her only second-up star t of an eight-run career and will be pressuring Ryan’s runner again in a race that sets up even better for her this time.
But Washing ton Heights was still a $3 favour tive with punters on Wednesday morning.
“He’s done really well since his last star t. He’s a straight-for ward horse who doesn’t cop plenty of work. He just does a bit of swimming and his work on the course proper on Tuesday morning was ver y good,” Ryan said.
“She’s (Dawn Wall) a good mare and she would be improved off her first-up run.”
Ryan will instruct Kerrin McEvoy to take a sit towards the back of the field and if all goes to plan he won’t have to weave his way up the rail like he did last star t.
“He was probably ridden a bit close due to the circumstances of the race and he didn’t have a lot room on the fence. I think he’s better horse ridden quietly and then taken to the outside,” Ryan said.