New pas­sage for Kiwi

Waikato Times - - Racing -

A hor­ror gate has de­layed Sum­mer Pas­sage’s quest for an Aus­tralian Group I ti­tle.

Con­nec­tions were dealt a blow when the Mata­mata-trained colt was al­lot­ted the out­side gate for Saturday’s Group I Caulfield Guineas (1600m) and fol­low­ing due dili­gence, they have de­cided to by­pass the $A2 mil­lion fea­ture.

‘‘It’s just too hard from out there in a race like that,’’ said Lance O’Sul­li­van, who pre­pares the son of Snitzel with An­drew Scott. ‘‘I spoke with his owner and he’s ob­vi­ously dis­ap­pointed, but un­der­stood how tough it would be so we’re going back to our original plan.’’

Raced by the Hong Kong-based Eu­gene Chuang un­der his Her­mitage Thor­ough­breds ban­ner, Sum­mer Pas­sage will now run in the Group III Blue Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield next Wednesday as a lead into the Group I Cool­more Stud Stakes (1200m) at Flem­ing­ton on Novem­ber 4.

‘‘He’s got a good record over the shorter dis­tances so we don’t think it’s a prob­lem and Hugh Bow­man will be rid­ing him in the Blue Sapphire,’’ O’Sul­li­van said.

‘‘I’ve spoken with An­drew, who’s over there, and the horse is re­ally well. He’s kick­ing his heels up and feel­ing fan­tas­tic.’’

Sum­mer Pas­sage ran eighth in the Group II Dane­hill Stakes (1200m) in his three-year-old de­but be­fore a last-start sec­ond in the Group III Caulfield Guineas Pre­lude (1400m). The colt won last sea­son’s Group I Sis­tema Stakes (1200m) and was run­ner-up in the Group I ATC Sires’ Pro­duce Stakes (1400m).

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