Ichihara to play with Kindergarten rivals
By Mathew Toogood
SYDNEY, April 12 AAP – Welfare for the horse and not money was the determining factor in connections of Ichihara opting against paying a Golden Slipper late entry fee for the filly.
Ichihara instead will be out to end her two-year-old season unbeaten when she lines up for her fourth start in Saturday’s Group Three Kindergarten Stakes (1100m) at Randwick.
Breeder and owner George Altomonte had a decision to make after the Allan Denham-trained Ichihara won the Group Two Magic Night Stakes at Rosehill last start.
He could have paid a $150,000 late entry fee to run the filly the following Saturday in the Golden Slipper but decided against it.
“We were really thinking of the welfare of that filly and I think to run her in the Slipper would have been a bit hard on her,” Altomonte said.
“So we’ve kept her back and she’ll run in the Kindergarten on Saturday.
“I would have paid it because you could have got it back in the first four placings and she is good enough for that. But it would have just been hard on her.”
Altomonte still took a keen interest in the Golden Slipper having bred Raceway and Narcissus who finished fifth and 13th respectively.
Ichihara will head for a spell after the Kindergarten, a race which attracted just six entries, and Altomonte is confident the speedster can end her campaign with another victory.
“She is definitely going out for a spell after this and she’ll come back for the three-year-old races,” he said.
“She’s got a lot left in her yet.”
Ichihara will be ridden by Corey Brown who piloted the filly to a tough win in the Magic Night.
That victory backed up wins at Wyong on debut and at Warwick Farm.
Ichihara is the $2.20 favourite with TAB Sportsbet ahead of the Gerald Ryan-trained Dances On Stars who resumes for the first time since November.Headline: RACE:Ichihara to play with Kindergarten rivals
13 Apr 7:44 AM