Charging home to finish an exceptional fourth in the featured Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) first-up at Caulfield on August 30th, trainer Roger James has revealed he is pleased with the continually building form of champion mare Silent Achiever and is confident of a polished performance in this weekend’s Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m).
Returning to the track in without doubt career-best form this year, Silent Achiever won a minor event over 1500m in her native New Zealand first-up before securing three impressive victories at the highest level of racing back-to-back; claiming each of the Group 1 New Zealand Stakes (200m), Group 1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and Group 1 The BMW (2400m); returning to the paddock after running fourth in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) on Day 2 of The Championships.
Performing well in a trial on Tuesday morning despite some communication issues, James told Racing Ahead he is confident the step-up in distance and condition of the Underwood Stakes will play directly into the strengths of the O’reilly mare this weekend.
“I thought her work was solid, I was happy with it,” James said.
“We had perfect footing out in the middle of the course proper and she worked in company and I thought her work was good.
“She was asked to go 1600 metres, but they ended up only going 12. Something was lost in translation, but having said that, her work was good.
“It’s hard to quantify improvement until you ask the next question, but I know the mare well and given the build-up she’s had, the thing that will see an improved performance is the fact that she’s going further.
“She was running to line well until he had to take hold of her the last bit first up. So her fitness levels were OK for the job at hand and that was probably as good as you’ll get from her at 1400,” he said of her Memsie Stakes performance.
A four-time Group 1 winner having taken out the 2012 edition of the New Zealand Derby (2400m), Silent Achiever has been confirmed to target the featured Group 1 Caulfield Cup (2400m) this time in, and will be required to carry just 54.5kgs.
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