Make or break for Chantilly Chateau over middle distance
SHE’S had two attempts at 2000m for one third but Jason Reilly says this is the day for Chantilly Chateau to break through at the trip when he runs in a Benchmark 55 Handicap (2020m) at Murwillumbah.
The five-year-old mare comes into the race off a fourth at Grafton over 1610m and, after a luckless run over 2100m at Lismore a start earlier, Reilly is going back to the middle distance trip for another crack.
“Her run at Grafton was excellent after a month between runs,” he said.
“She got crowded from the 600m and couldn’t get a good crack at them but she hit the line nicely and indicated that the 2000m would be right up her alley.
“She’s an older mare now and this is the way she works for me. You’ve just got to look at the way she ran last start. This should be the perfect distance for her.”
She’s back in grade for today’s run but has to carry 4.5kg more.
Chantilly Chateau did win four starts ago with 59.5kg on her back, though, and her trainer said the drop in class is the more influential aspect.
“The weight is a concern but I’ll still be disappointed if she doesn’t run well considering how she’s come on since Grafton,” he said.
Reilly said she’ll look to make her own luck and sit just behind the speed from barrier seven and jockey Belinda Hodder will likely park in behind Joueur who doesn’t mind leading.
“I’m hoping she’ll be in the first three or four,” Reilly said.
“If she can’t run out the 2020m against this field, we’ll go back to 1600m and 1800m races.
“This is her chance. She’s five runs in and her work has been excellent.”