Apollo Stakes: Prized Icon to take on Winx

Posted on 12/17/2018

Prized Icon winning the 2016 Champagne Stakes. Picture: bradleyphotos苏州美甲.auNewcastle-trained Prized Iconwill take on resuming superstar Winx in the group 2 Apollo Stakes at Randwick on February 17.

Thefour-year-oldstallion, a two-time group 1 winner with James Cummings,was a strong second on debut for Kris Lees last Saturday in the Carrington Stakes (1400 metres).

Lees announced on Thursday that the2016 Victoria Derby winner would head tothe weight-for-age $250,000 Apollo Stakes over the same distance.

“He pulled up well and has done well this week, and the Apollo Stakes is really the next suitable race for him,” Lees said on his website.“We’ll probably have to take on the mare, but it will give Prized Icon a nice break of three weeks between runs.”

Meanwhile, High Opinion will spearhead Lees’ team at Rosehill on Saturday when he runs in the benchmark 81 handicap (2000m).Villa Carlotta and Admiral Jello will resume at the meeting.

AAP reports:Doubtfilly’s first progeny has no pressure to emulate his dam’sGolden Slipper exploits when he steps out in a lead-up to the two-year-olds feature.

Trainer Edward O’Rourke could not resist running Catanzaro in Saturday’s group 2 Canonbury Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill but expects the colt to prove more competitive over longer distances.Doubtfilly was fourth in the 2012 Slipper but O’Rourkeis placing more significance on Catanzaro’s sire.

“Being by So You Think, you’d think he’d get out to 1400 or a mile,” he said.

“I’d say we’ll see the best of him when he step him out of a bit further.”

The shortest distance So You Think, a multiple growinner in both hemispheres, won over was 1400m.

But Randwick-based O’Rourke would not pass up a crack at the $3.5 million Golden Slipper on March 24 should Catanzaro qualify.

The group 1 Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) and Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Randwick in April are on O’Rourke’s wish list.

“We won’t campaign him too heavily before then. If he doesn’t qualify for the Slipper we won’t worry too much about it,” O’Rouke said.

Catanzaro last raced in November and his third start follows a trial at Rosehill on January 22 when he finished 1-1/4 lengths fifth behind $1.60 Canonbury Stakes favourite and leading Golden Slipper contender Performer.

“He travelled up very easy. Jason (Collett) was very complimentary,” O’Rourke said.

An in-form Brenton Avdulla takes over the reins with instructions to bide his time on Catanzaro.

“We’re riding for a bit of luck and riding for black-type,” O’Rourke said.

“I think we’ll see him better later in the year but you have to have a crack when you have them fit and ready to run.

“I just thought with five runners it would be hard to pass up,” he said.

“You’ve got two first starters (Exceltic and Stratosphere). You can’t beat race experience.”