Redzel’s rise to prominence and the emergence of In Her Time means dual TJ Smith Stakes placegetter English again has her work cut out in the $2.5 million weight-for-age feature at Randwick.
Three-time winner Chautauqua will miss this year’s race but that hasn’t made Sydney’s premier sprint any easier.
Waterhouse’s reaction as Chautauqua pipped English by a short neck was one of the enduring images of The Championships last autumn, and co-trainer Bott hoped for a happier outcome on Saturday.
English, who was third in 2016 TJ Smith Stakes, is having the third run of her preparation in the 1200m-Group One race Bott says she is in peak condition.
“She a five-year-old now and the most pleasing thing is she’s developed and she’s really holding her condition well this preparation,” he said.
Bott said English had pulledup well from her second to In Her Time in the Group One Galaxy (1100m) on March 24 and the stable was growing confident she could turn the tables on the mare.
Everest winner Redzel maintains his position at the top of the market.
“It isn’t going to be an easy task by any means but I still felt there is improvement to come from her Galaxy run,” Bott said.
English wore blinkers for the first time in The Galaxy but seemed sharp in the gear during a course proper work-out at Randwick on Tuesday.
“She missed the kick by a half a length in the Galaxy so she wasn’t able to travel as close as we’d have liked but I thought she did a fantastic job making up ground,” Bott said.
He admitted barrier 12 was not ideal so English and her jockey Sam Clipperton would need a good run.
“Her natural pattern is to get back so you need a lot of luck to get the right run in transit from that draw,” Bott said.
“You need the runs to present themselves at the right time.”
Bott said stablemate Global Glamour was also in excellent shape after being freshened since her second to Happy Clapper in the Group One Canterbury Stakes (1300m) on March 10.
“It took a good horse to run her down. She’s a tough mare and has to be included in the mix,” he said.
“She’s also got a wide draw (10) to contend with but usually she’s got the tactical speed to overcome that and lead.”