The decision not to send Rocky Sturdy to Brisbane in the hope of a Stradbroke Handicap start sits well with his trainer Joe Pride.
As second emergency for Saturday’s $2 million race at Doomben, Rock Sturdy edged closer to the field with the scratching of Lord Of The Sky and a doubt over Knoydart on Friday.
But having already pulled the pin a day earlier, Pride is happy to concentrate on his runners at Randwick including three in the Listed June Stakes.
“I decided on Thursday not to risk sending Rock Sturdy up just hoping for a start,” Pride said.
“He’ll go to the paddock and we’ll bring him back for races in the spring. I only want to run him in Group One races and there are no more this season.”
The most favoured of Pride’s three June Stakes runners among punters is Target In Sight and he is also the one trainer thinks has the best chance in the 1100m sprint despite drawing the outside barrier.
“He is a backmarker so the barrier is not so important for him,” Pride said.
“I think See The World and Diamond Oasis will also go well but he is the best chance of the three.
“If he goes well he may go to a Listed race at the Gold Coast.”
Classy mare Avoid Lightning, the 60kg topweight, was the $3.80 favourite on Friday ahead of Target In Sight who carries 1.5kg less.
Jay Ford rides Target In Sight while Jason Collett is aboard $8.50 chance See The World and visiting New Zealand apprentice Rory Hutchings is on See The World ($17).
Pride will have his first Saturday two-year-old runner of the season when Yaboroo runs over 1100m.
The trainer has few juvenile runners and decided to throw Yaboroo into Saturday class when he drew badly in the two-year-old race at Rosehill on Monday.
“He is a really nice colt who did a few things wrong on debut,” Pride said.
“We had him in on Monday but he drew 15 so we decided to run him at Randwick.”
Second at Gosford on May 26, Yaboroo is a $41 chance with Godolphin’s Holler the $1.65 favourite.