Golden Slipper winner Pierro has been backed into red figures to continue two winning streaks in his return to racing at Rosehill on Saturday.
The glamour colt firmed from $2.20 to $1.80 on Friday for the Group Three Run To The Rose (1200m) as he strives to maintain an unbeaten record while trying to become the seventh successive favourite to win the traditional lead-up race to the $1 million Golden Rose.
“Pierro is responsible for 85 per cent of all money invested on the race,” TAB Sportsbet’s Glenn Munsie said.
A sequence of favourites winning the Run To The Rose started in 2006 with Mentality ($4.60) and continued with El Cambio ($3.20), Desuetude ($2.35), Denman ($3.70), Squamosa ($2.60) and last year’s winner Smart Missile ($1.70).
The Run To The Rose will be Pierro’s first start since he claimed the coveted two-year-old triple crown which embraces the Golden Slipper, Sires’ Produce Stakes and Champagne Stakes during the Sydney autumn carnival.
Waterhouse bided her time before deciding on a comeback race for the star youngster, who has won six from six, and punters have echoed her confidence with Pierro the only Run To The Rose runner to firm from an opening quote.
The Randwick trainer said it was important to find the right first-up race for Pierro because she was focused on winning the Caulfield Guineas and Cox Plate.
She said she waited until Pierro showed a sign he was ready to race before committing him to a Run To The Rose start.
“With him I’ve got very much a plan in mind which is the Guineas and hopefully the Cox Plate and I wanted to make sure the starting race was almost as important,” Waterhouse said.
“If I was to give him a gut-wrencher, something that’s really hard and affects him, it will affect him in those major races.”
The Run To The Rose features a return clash with another boom colt in All Too Hard, who holds down second favouritism at $2.70 after opening at $2.50.
Pierro defeated All Too Hard in the Sires’ Produce Stakes in the only meeting of their high-profile careers.
“Most of the money for All Too Hard has come today. There was nothing really for him before today,” Munsie said.
“And we can’t write another runner’s name.”