Trainer Gillian Heinrich is being realistic and hasn’t any great winter carnival expectations for her three fillies in the Bright Shadow Quality at Doomben.
Sweepstaking, Swiss Rose and second emergency Irish Dream are all on the comeback trail in Saturday’s 1200-metre Listed feature.
“I want to give them all a couple of runs first and then be realistic where to go with them during the winter,” Heinrich said.
“At this stage I’m just looking at the fillies and mares races and none of the major sprints.”
However, the Group One Winter Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm in June could be on the radar if any of the trio measure up during some of the early winter races.
Heinrich is still mystified by Sweepstaking’s failures last campaign, notably when the daughter of Not A Single Doubt tailed the field in the Group Three How Now Stakes (1200m) won by Valentine Miss at Caulfield on September 18.
Two weeks earlier, Sweepstaking also failed in the Group Three Bobbie Lewis (1200m) at Flemington.
Sweepstaking also campaigned in Sydney last autumn where she went winless in four starts.
However, her autumn form last year was far more profitable than her Melbourne spring with a third to More Joyous in the Group Two Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) at Randwick and a second to Verballed in the Bacardi Breezer Handicap (1100m) at Rosehill.
“I’m not sure what happened to her in Melbourne and it was nowhere near her best,” Heinrich said.
“I’m still at a loss to explain what went wrong down there but fillies can do that and have an off preparation.
“I think she’s going a lot better this prep and I was happy when she finished second in a barrier trial at Eagle Farm last week.”
Heinrich rates Sweepstaking the pick of her trio but is predicting a bright future for Irish Dream.
“I think Sweepstaking is better than Swiss Rose and Irish Dream looks to have a good future,” she said.
“I’d like to see Irish Dream get a run. She’s only a class two filly but she goes really good.”
Irish Dream hasn’t raced since finishing second to Beyonce’s Star in the Listed Just Now Quality (1300m) at Eagle Farm in December.
The daughter of Falbrav was an impressive winner in an 1100-metre barrier trial at Eagle Farm last week.
Swiss Rose will also be making her return after finishing sixth in the Just Now Quality.
“She’s coming along well and is a black-type winner and she’ll probably follow Sweepstaking’s path during the winter,” Heinrich said.