Trainer Nick Olive is already thinking ahead to the spring carnival as he prepares Single Gaze for the Hollindale Stakes at the Gold Coast.
Olive arrived on the Gold Coast on Sunday night to oversee Single Gaze’s lead-up to Saturday’s Group Two race which has attracted a field of 12.
Single Gaze won last year’s Group One Vinery Stud Stakes but fell in her next start in the Group One ATC Australian Oaks.
While she did not sustain a major injury, Single Gaze was severely bruised and Olive spent months getting her back to the racetrack.
After a short Sydney autumn carnival campaign Single Gaze came to Brisbane and beat a strong field of local horses in the Listed Tails Handicap over 1600 metres last Saturday week.
“I couldn’t be happier with the way she looked,” Olive said.
“She galloped on Tuesday and went very well. She should be spot-on for the 1800 metres on Saturday.”
Olive and jockey Kathy O’Hara, who was injured in the Oaks fall, were thrilled with her comeback win.
“A lot of hard work from my staff and Kathy went into getting her back to winning,” Olive said.
“You haven’t seen the best of her yet and I hope she can win some more stakes races this winter.
“The 1600 metres was short of her best last start and she had a big weight. Also it was a pretty strong field of Brisbane gallopers.”
Olive realises Saturday’s race will be tougher but he also thinks Single Gaze has improved since the win.
“From here she will press on to the (Group One) Doomben Cup in a fortnight and that will be it for the winter,” Olive said.
As for the spring Olive is keeping his options open until after the Doomben Cup.
“You never get too far in front of yourself in this game. But if she comes through the winter well I wouldn’t mind setting her for a race like the Caulfield Cup,” Olive said.
“But that is all in the future and I am just happy having her back racing.”
O’Hara will again ride Single Gaze who is her favourite horse.
“Kathy had a long road back from injury and surgery after the Oaks fall but no one is riding better,” Olive said.No tags for this post.