Trial Watch Reviews: 16th February 2023

Chris Scholtz reviews Sydney and provincial barrier trials at Warwick Farm and Newcastle on February 16.

RED RESISTANCE Picture: Steve Hart

WARWICK FARM February 16

Course Proper (Good 4) – 1 x 1000m (Group/Listed_

Inside Grass (Good 4) – 3 x 1200m (2 Open; 1 Maiden); 4 x 800m (2 Open; 2 2YO); 4 x 798m (3 2YO; 1 3YO); 4 x 795m 4 Maiden)

Polytrack – 1 x 1175 (Open); 1 x 740m (Open)

The return of a classy international sprinter and a big trial win by an unbeaten 2YO were the highlights of this big session.

HEAT 1 – 1000m (Group/Listed): Anthony and Sam Freedman's international star ARTORIUS had a jump-out in Victoria last month but it was obvious he was here for a solid hitout. James McDonald put him under a ride over the last 200m to head off the leader SIBAAQ, pushing him out to win the trial by more than two lengths without breaking the clock (60.26; 33.08). Having him in Sydney for this trial indicates the Freedmans are focused on having him at his peak for the TJ Smith in April. Class act PROFONDO put in the big trial to finish second, travelling strongly on the bit and closing off sweetly under a cold ride over the last 200m. He was below his best in the spring but this trial indicates he has come up well – could be he is a better autumn horse? HOPE IN YOUR HEART made ground steadily from the rear for a soft fourth but was almost five lengths from the winner.

The G1 star PRIVATE EYE had his second trial in an open heat over 800m won by CALMER KARMA (47.13; 33.08). Like his first-up trial he was out for easy exercise, indicating Joe Pride is intent on keeping the lid on his freshness as we know he can produce a big first-up sprint. The winner is an interesting proposition as he is the winner of one race from seven starts and hasn't been seen at the races since last May. He is eligible a C1 and will be hard to beat in restricted class on the strength of the speed he showed to lead the heat easily and coast home by almost four lengths.

The 2YO heats featured impressive win by the classy colt RED RESISTANCE and the unraced pair ENCAP and OZ EMPRESS.

ENCAP (Gary Portelli): A strong debut trial by this Capitalist colt from a good 2YO stable. He had no trouble leading and did it easily to win his 798m heat under a hold (46.82; 33.08). Could have gone quicker.

OZ EMPRESS (Gai Waterhouse/Adrian Bott): Another natural runner for a stable enjoying a big season with their youngsters. She's a free running filly by Exceed And Excel and is certain to take plenty of benefit from this first trial experience after she led her 800m heat with ease and ran away from them over the last 200m in the fastest of the four heats over the distance (47.01; 33.11).

RED RESISTANCE (Gai Waterhouse/Adrian Bott): The best trial of the morning from this unbeaten Russian Revolution colt. Showed again he has all the right attributes, leading his 798m heat easily and extending his margin at the finish to more than five lengths without any pressure being applied but still posting a brilliant time (45.36; 31.94). He will test any 2YO up to 1100m - the big test will come when he is tried over 1200m.

Must mention the polytrack win by BRAVE KNIGHT, the unraced Epaulette 3YO who made a big impression winning a trial at Hawkesbury last month by a space. He did it again clearing out in the 740m heat to win untouched by almost five lengths in fast time (43.13; 32.63) from some well performed winners.

Other heat winners making the blackbook include LONDON, SECUATION, GLOBAL EMPIRE and KING OBERON.


XX Encap; Oz Empress; Profondo; Red Resistance

X Arbitration; Artorius; Brave Knight; Calmer Karma; Dylan's Lad; Global Empire; King Oberon; London; Picarones; Secaution; Simplicity.

NEWCASTLE February 16

Beaumont; Good 4

19 Heats – 2 x 1200m (2 Open); 8 x 1000m (5 Open; 3 Maiden); 9 x 800m (3 Open; 3 2YO; 3 Maiden)

KIPSBAY is an exciting talent with his 800m heat win as good as you will see at provincial trials. Some nice prospects should emerge from the 2YO heats.


XXX Kipsbay

XX Curl Curl; Fleet Air Arm; Wooloowin

X Acquitted; Almania; Audette; Cruel Summer; Just Like Lisa; Lazalite; Meet Me In Bondi; Mobstar; Rush Hour; Spangler

Racing and Sports