Sheezdashing and Marcel in action in Flemington Group 2 races

Sep 14, 2018

A little more luck in running would have sent Sheezdashing on a different path to Saturday’s Group II Let’s Elope Stakes (1400m) at Flemington.

Sheezdashing was a touch unlucky when narrowly beaten into third behind Youngstar and Another Dollar in the Group I Queensland Oaks (2200m) and went down by a head to Sopressa in the Group I Schweppes Oaks (200m) in May.

Had Sheezdashing got up in either or both races, she’d have another couple of kilograms more than the 50kg she was given when the Caulfield Cup weights were released on Tuesday. She now faces an almost impossible task to make the Caulfield Cup field.

Trainers Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahra expect Sheezdashing to make an impact in the spring, but it is now more likely to be in support races during the carnival

“We’ll get her up and going and see where it takes us,” Zahra said. “She could end up in a Sandown Classic or maybe the Matriarch at Flemington.”

Saturday’s Let’s Elope Stakes will be run over the 1400m trip, which could be a touch short for Sheezdashing but the daughter of Myboycharlie has shown the Flemington training partners enough to suggest she could produce a surprise first-up win.

“We’re really happy with her. Her jumpouts have been sharp and it’s the best she has been with us,” Zahra said.

“The trip to Queensland really did her the world of good.

“She’s quite fat still but we still expect her to run a really good race.

“I reckon she has got a good little chance in a hard race.”

Zahra said he and Ellerton expected the stable’s other Flemington runner Marcel From Madrid to be hard to beat in the Group II Danehill Stakes (1200m) down the Flemington straight course.

Marcel From Madrid was impressive in his two-year-old wins last season and wasn’t disgraced when fourth to Brutal on a track favouring leaders in the Listed McKenzie Stakes (1200m) when resuming on August 25.

Zahra said Marcel From Madrid has not seen the straight despite being trained at the track, but the gelding has come on since his first-up run.

“We weren’t overly confident he could win from the gate at the Valley and it probably didn’t go to plan,” Zahra said. “We’ll see if he can handle the straight and we’ll go from there.

“He had a nice gallop last Saturday and another one on Tuesday, so we’ve put a bit of work into him. He’s better for that work but he’ll improve again after Saturday.

“His coat hasn’t come through yet. He’s getting there but it’s just taking a while.”

Damien Thornton will ride Sheezdashing while regular rider Damian Lane will be aboard Marcel From Madrid.

Good luck to the owners of both horses and all involved with getting them to the races in such great condition.