Manikato Still a Possibility for Snitzerland

The door remains open for gun filly Snitzerland to take on the older horses in the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) on Cox Plate eve with the three-year-old among 23 initial acceptors for the $750,000 sprint.


Snitzerland is one of 23 initial acceptors for the Manikato Stakes. Photo by: Race Horse Photos Australia.

Trainer Gerald Ryan has declared the Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) in November as the major Group 1 spring target for the three-year-old but he may be tempted to chase Group 1 glory earlier especially given her recent form.

The Golden Slipper runner-up is unbeaten in three spring starts, winning the Group 3 San Domenico Stakes at Rosehill before arriving in Melbourne to take out both the Group 2 Danehill Stakes and the Group 3 Champagne Stakes.

Snitzerland will continue her spring campaign this weekend when she contests the $250,000 Blue Sapphire (1200m) at Caulfield.

The daughter of Snitzel is the only three-year-old to accept for the Manikato Stakes which is headed by Queensland sprinter Buffering.

The Manikato stands as an acid test for the Robert Heathcote-trained star who is yet to win at Group 1 level despite seven place finishes in the top grade.

Buffering gave a strong indication he is ready to assume the mantle of the nation’s best sprinter in the absence of Black Caviar and Hay List at Moonee Valley last month when scoring a tough first-up win in the Group 3 Moir Stakes (1200m).

The five-year-old is one of three Queensland horses in contention for the Manikato Stakes, with Tony Gollan accepting with Group 1 winner Temple Of Boom and his consistent brother Spirit Of Boom.

Buffering is set to face a rematch with Doomben 10,000 winner Sea Siren who will trial at Randwick on Friday before running fresh in the Manikato Stakes.

Other key acceptors for the Manikato Stakes include Stradbroke Handicap winner Mid Summer Music, Tim Martin-trained four-year-old Pampelonne and the Darley-owned Mental who is yet to step out this spring.

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