Chris Waller has nine runners in Group One races on Saturday but believes his stable is still building as a carnival force.
Sydney’s leading trainer has won two Group Ones so far this autumn with Danleigh (Chipping Norton Stakes) and Rangirangdoo (George Ryder).
Waller hopes to improve on that with runners in all four Group Ones on Sydney Cup day, including Rangirangdoo and Danleigh who will face each other in the All-Aged Stakes (1400m).
“It’s been pretty good,” Waller said of his autumn carnival results.
“In terms of carnival horses I still think we’re in a building stage. We’re lucky we’ve got some good old seasoned campaigners that keep coming up every year but the focus on the next carnival will be getting more two and three-year-olds racing.
“We didn’t have a big three-year-old crop this year. Overall I’m pretty happy with the way things have gone but I know there’s still room for improvement.”
Rangirangdoo showed his class two weeks ago when he scored a determined win in the George Ryder in just his second start after almost a year off the scene.
Excitement turned to worry after the race as Waller feared Rangirangdoo had re-injured himself, but thankfully for the trainer the dual Group One winner came through well.
“He was a run short coming back from a long lay-off and still won,” Waller said.
“He’s come through the race remarkably well, it didn’t look good straight after the race, but the vet has come to check him every day and he’s been good as gold and getting better every day.
“He hasn’t missed any work, he’s had five solid work-outs since (the George Ryder) and he’ll go into the race on Saturday very fit and ready to go.”
Danleigh won the All-Aged two years ago but failed in the race last year after running in the Doncaster a week earlier.
The seven-year-old is again backing up from the Doncaster in which he finished four lengths seventh in the heavy ground.
“He’s never won on a heavy track and just doesn’t get confidence in that type of going, yet on a slow track he’s almost unbeatable,” Waller said.
“It didn’t work out that well when we backed him up in this race last year but from memory it was a slow tempo and this year there looks to be a lot more speed and I’m sure he’ll run his normal honest race.”
Brisbane-bound Triple Honour, the 2008 Doncaster winner, is the stable’s other Group One-winning representative in the All-Aged.
He ran into a place in the TJ Smith Stakes first-up and Waller is hoping chasing Black Caviar and Hay List in that 1200m feature won’t affect his performance second-up.
“I’m hoping he’s not going to be a little bit flat from that,” he said.
“He’s given no indications of that, he’s been really good and we’ll ride him a similar way to get back and get home.
“Hopefully he’s hitting the line and we should have him cherry ripe for the Hollindale Stakes and Doomben Cup.”