The Winx Stakes will be the first of three Group One targets for classy mare Con Te Partiro.
Breeders’ Cup plans for Con Te Partiro remain in place but the Tulloch Lodge mare has been entered for all the major Australian spring races as a back-up.
With the COVID-19 pandemic threatening to scuttle ambitions to take the US-bred mare to the States for the rich meeting at Keeneland in November, trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott are keeping all options open.
“That’s still the long-range plan but we put in nominations for all the majors here as well,” Bott said.
“(There’s) the Epsom, she holds a Cox Plate entry, all these types of races she holds entries for in case something happens. There is a back up plan.”
Bott confirmed Con Te Partiro would be the stable’s main chance in Saturday’s Winx Stakes (1400m) at Randwick, the first Group One race of the season.
Stablemate and Japanese-bred stayer Wolfe is also among the stellar list of 20 nominations.
“He will be on a staying program and this will just kick him off,” Bott said of Wolfe.
“Con Te will be the main one, I thought she trialled up excellent. If we get these types of (wet) conditions as well, well that’s excellent for her.
“We tried to have her a bit more forward this time around for the first up run. We are only going to have the three Group One targets here in Australia.”
Con Te Partiro won the Group One double of the Coolmore Classic and Legacy Stakes in the autumn and has the Epsom Handicap as her major Sydney goal.
Trainer Chris Waller is set to have a strong presence in the Winx Stakes, named after his champion mare.
He has nominated six horses, including Verry Elleegant, Kolding and Funstar, who has also been entered for the Show County Quality on the same program.
The race promises to showcase some of Sydney’s most exciting spring talent with Melody Belle, Master Of Wine and Godolphin pair Flit and Avilius also in the mix.