Houtzen to bounce back in Coolmore
TOBY Edmonds has been on a wild ride on late and it will continue in tomorrow’s Group 1 $1m Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flemington.
The Gold Coast trainer takes Houtzen and Eptimum to the straight six sprint off very different formlines.
Houtzen has always been his stable star since winning the Magic Millions 2YO Classic and she’s coming off a credible seventh in The Everest.
“She’s been great. She came through Everest run really well. had a week out then came back into the stables last Sunday and is in good order,” Edmonds said.
“In a high pressure race like that she was a bit of a sitting duck, especially inside an older, seasoned horse like Redzel.”
Edmonds is looking forward to testing her against her own age again after taking on the country’s best sprinters last start.
It’s a bit like playing first grade and coming back to reserves grade for Houtzen tomorrow, although it is a quality field of three-year- olds including Golden Rose winner Trapeze Artist and the undefeated Godolphin colt Viridine.
“She’s had a good experience against good, hardened Group 1 sprinters so that will hold her in good stead for the future,” Edmonds said.
“It (coming back to her own age) fits in well. There’s no way a threeyear- old filly would have raced against those horses without The Everest concept.
“It’s like any young sportsman. They take good experience out of taking on better company then coming back to their own grade and she’ll run really well on Saturday.”
Edmonds will also saddle up surprise runner Eptimum after he travelled down to Melbourne as more of a travel companion Houtzen with the plan running in a few lower grade races.
But he went so well in them the Edmonds put him in last weekend’s Group 3 Red Anchor Stakes and he won that by three lengths, prompting the trainer to give him a crack at a Group 1.
“A lot of people are saying that he was more of a travel companion and it’s probably a fair call but he fitted the Victorian model and we ran him in a couple of bonus races to start with,” Edmonds said.
“Once he got them out of the road and won quite comfortably we decided to give him a run last Saturday and there’s one Group 1 race for three-year- old’s left in the spring and he deserves his chance.”
Despite being unknown a few weeks ago, Edmonds has always held the Snitzel gelding in high regard.
“He and Houtzen have done all their work together as yearlings and this preparation there’s been very little between them on the track,” he said.
“He’s learnt a lot and it’s a bonus of having a filly of her quality at home to get benchmark off.” Meanwhile Godolphin trainer James Cummings said he’d love to see Viridine remain unbeaten and win the prized breeders race.
“He’s a very fast colt and we’ve been delighted with his training. He comes into this third up and ready to hit an absolute peak. He needs to have gone ahead if he’s going to be winning, but we feel like he’s done that,” Cummings said.
Tony Edmonds is confident Houtzen will bounce back against her own age in the Coolmore Stud Stakes.