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A successful trip to Canberra last month has prepared Klammer well for his Black Opal assignment but track conditions will determine whether Gerald Ryan has two runners in the race.

Klammer scored a short-head win over Chief Of The Clan in 1000m race on February 23 and picked up a $50,000 Inglis bonus for his owners.

His stablemate Lucky Raquie, third in the Gimcrack Stakes in October, was well beaten in the Widden Stakes on a slow Rosehill track on February 15 and and a wet tack on Sunday would rule her out of the Listed Black Opal (1200m).

Ryan won the 1996 Black Opal with Paint who had collected the Group One Blue Diamond on the way and backed up after Canberra to run a gallant second to Merlene in the Golden Slipper.

The trainer doesn’t put either of his nominated two-year-olds in that class but is pleased with how they have progressed.

“Klammer is very well and came through his last race in good order,” Ryan said.

“We took him there so he could have a look at the track and it was a good result.

“Lucky Raquie won’t go if the track is worse than dead. If that happens we will find another race for her.”

Ryan’s planned Canberra Cup runner Red Excitement has been sidelined by injury but he will have Dances On Stars in the National Sprint.

“Red Excitement whacked a tendon last week,” Ryan said.

“It isn’t a serious injury but it will keep him out until spring.

“I think Dances On Stars will be suited by the 1400 metres. He is racing like he needs the distance.

“We had him in the Liverpool City Cup at Warwick Farm on Saturday as well but Canberra looks ideal.”

Klammer tops the weights among 21 entries taken for the Black Opal on Tuesday with 56kg while the Gai Waterhouse-trained Julienas heads 24 entries for the Cup (2000m) with 60kg.

The National Sprint attracted 20 nominations but several are also entered for Warwick Farm, while 36 three-year-olds were entered for the Canberra Guineas (1400m).

Dances On Stars has 56kg in the Sprint with the Chris Waller-trained Riva De Lago topweight with 59.5kg.

 
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