The All Aged Stakes could determine bragging rights as the Sydney autumn carnival’s leading Group One trainer.
Joe Pride, Chris Waller and Gai Waterhouse all have two Group One wins apiece and all have runners in Saturday’s All Aged Stakes (1400m) at Randwick.
Pride sends out the two horses who have already starred at the highest level this autumn – Coolmore Classic winner Steps In Time and Galaxy winner Tiger Tees.
Waller has Doncaster Mile third placed Weary engaged while Waterhouse runs three-year-old Woodbine who is backing up after his second to New Zealander Beauty’s Beast in last Saturday’s South Pacific Classic.
The wins by Steps In Time and Tiger Tees marked the resurgence of Pride who had a lean time in Group One racing over the previous season.
Steps In Time is second favourite behind the Gary Portelli-trained Rebel Dane who finished second to star sprinter Lankan Rupee in the $2.5 million TJ Smith Stakes.
Gerald Ryan has the favourite Peggy Jean in the other Group One on the program, the Champagne Stakes (1600m).
Peggy Jean won the Sires’ Produce Stakes but Ryan’s chances of a Group One double on Saturday are over with the decision to send Snitzerland to Brisbane rather than run her in the All Aged.
Nash Rawiller leads the jockeys with four Group One winners – Silent Achiever (Ranvet, BMW), Tiger Tees (Galaxy) and Peggy Jean (Sires’ Produce).
He reunites with Peggy Jean in the Champagne Stakes and will be aboard Japanese mare Hana’s Goal in the All Aged.
His nearest rival is James McDonald who has three wins at the highest level – Mossfun (Golden Slipper), Rising Romance (ATC Oaks) and It’s A Dundeel (Queen Elizabeth).
“I struck a blank last week but I’ll try to bounce back from that,” Rawiller said.
“Up until that I was probably having the best carnival of anyone apart from James (McDonald).”
McDonald’s only Group One ride on Saturday is Bennetta in the All Aged.
Tommy Berry and Hugh Bowman are on two apiece and have rides in both major races.