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Tsaritsa challenged to rediscover form

Jockey Joao Moreira rides Tsaritsa (17)
Chris Waller is looking to Tsaritsa to recapture her Queensland Guineas-winning form of a year ago.

Chris Waller is hopeful Tsaritsa can rediscover the form that carried her to Queensland Guineas success a year ago when she takes on a lower class field at Rosehill.

The mare, who runs in Saturday’s Octagonal Handicap (1400m), notched three wins in her three-year-old campaign including the Guineas at Eagle Farm.

“On her best form she’d blow this field away,” Waller said.

In five runs this year her best effort has been fourth in the Group Three Godolphin Crown at Hawkesbury in April although Waller gave her the benefit of the doubt after her ninth in the Group Three Dark Jewel Classic (1400m) at Scone.

“Her run at Scone was good. She got cannoned off the track at a vital stage yet still ran on OK,” he said.

“She’ll appreciate a good track and a good draw. If she gets things sorted in the first part of the race and is tractable in the straight, she’ll be hard to beat.”

Tsaritsa, who jumps from barrier two with Jay Ford aboard, was a $15 chance with the TAB on Friday to win for the first time in 12 months.

The Team Hawkes-trained Snoopy was a narrow $4.40 favourite ahead of Waller’s two other contenders Invinzabeel ($4.80) and Sir Bacchus ($5.50).

Waller said Invinzabeel, a last-start winner in the Winx Hall Of Fame Handicap, would benefit from apprentice Rachel King’s two kilogram claim which brings him down to 51.5kg.

Glyn Schofield will be instructed to position stablemate Sir Bacchus midfield if possible after a slow start in the Listed Luskin Star Stakes at Scone condemned him to fourth in his previous run.

“I’d love to see him settle a bit closer, midfield would be perfect,” Waller said.

“If he gets too far back he needs speed on to make it possible to finish off.

“He couldn’t have gone any better than he did at Scone for that simple reason.”

While Waller’s focus is on his seven-pronged crack at the Group One Queensland Oaks (2200m) at Doomben, he still had a soft spot for So Willie in the Eremein Handicap (1800m).

“He’s three from four this preparation. He’s probably the in-form horse in Sydney,” Waller said.

The TAB’s $3.50 favourite is racing for the third successive week following a fourth to Invinzabeel at Randwick.

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