Boss grounded over Kolding return
HALL of Fame jockey Glen Boss concedes racing's excitement machine Kolding is at his most vulnerable all preparation when he resumes in the Group 2 $200,000 Expressway Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on Saturday.
Kolding emerged as an emerging superstar of Australian racing last spring when he reeled off successive wins in the Bill Ritchie Handicap, Epsom Handicap and Golden Eagle.
Since being gelded, Kolding has won seven of his eight starts, his only defeat coming when he was a first-up fifth behind Dreamforce in the Tramway last spring.
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Boss admitted Kolding may find the 1200m short of his best when the four-year-old returns in Saturday's feature weight-for-age sprint.
"I'm not saying Kolding can't win but this is where he is most vulnerable,'' Boss said.
"If you look at his first-up run last spring he probably should have won so it is not like he can't perform fresh.
"From the draw, I will probably go back and I'd like to be following Alizee. One thing about Kolding, he always hits the line hard.''
Boss only just returned from a short overseas holiday during the week and was pleasantly surprised to see Kolding a late entry for the Expressway Stakes after trainer Chris Waller realised the race was not going to attract a big field.
"Kolding will still be a reasonably fit racehorse on fresh legs and he has obviously pleased Chris Waller to kick him off Saturday,'' the champion jockey said.
"The top horses don't have long out these days, so he will still have some residual fitness from the spring. It's exciting to see him back.''
Boss said while he was away he kept a close eye on Kolding's two barrier trials during the month and also The Everest winner Yes Yes Yes's recent trial hitout.
Waller confirmed yesterday that Yes Yes Yes will resume against stablemate Nature Strip in the Lightning Stakes at Flemington on February 15.
"Yes Yes Yes has returned in great order following a short summer break,'' Waller said.
"I plan to give him another solid piece of fast work in the next few days and he will then travel to Melbourne ahead of a scheduled jump out on February 7.
"Fortunately we are able to make use of the Flemington straight for this jump out and although he has won on the straight course earlier in his career, I feel it is important to further his experience in straight racing as we head towards the Lightning Stakes for his first up run where Glen Boss will ride again.''
Waller said he is yet to decide on an autumn program for Yes Yes Yes after the Lightning although the TJ Smith Stakes at Randwick during The Championships in April before taking the three-year-old to Royal Ascot in England.
"We look forward to showcasing his immense talent on the international stage,'' Waller said.
Nature Strip's return in the Lightning also starts his campaign which has the long term aim of racing the brilliant speedster at Royal Ascot.
"He is now a three-time Group 1 winner and also remains unbeaten down the straight at Flemington which made the Lightning Stakes the obvious first-up option for the summer/autumn with James McDonald aboard,'' Waller said.
"Like Yes Yes Yes, the owners and I are looking forward to the preparation unfolding and leading us to a possible Royal Ascot path.''
English riding sensation Tom Marquand is hopeful his successful Sydney summer could lead to some hit-and-run autumn carnival rides.
Marquand, 21, has been in a rich vein of form since arriving here for a "working holiday" this month, riding 12 winners including seven in the metropolitan area.
He's had another big week starting with two wins at Randwick and then a Warwick Farm success over the long weekend, a treble at Goulburn on Tuesday and a Kembla Grange double the next day.
Most of Sydney's leading trainers are using the talented young jockey including the Ciaron Maher-David Eustace stable, which has booked him for two rides on Golden Slipper hopefuls at Royal Randwick.
Marquand will ride Magic Millions winner Away Game in the Group 3 $160,000 Widden Stakes (1100m) and unbeaten stablemate Prague in the Group 3 $160,000 Canonbury Stakes (1100m).
"I would love to come back for the autumn carnival if the right opportunities arose, I would certainly be open to it,'' Marquand said.
"Obviously there is a lot of good jockeys in Sydney so I don't know if I will get the chance but if I did get an offer to ride in a race like a Golden Slipper then it would make a quick trip back to Sydney worth it.''
Marquand said the Golden Slipper, the world's richest two-year-old race, makes headlines back home in England every year.
"Everyone keeps an eye on races like the Golden Slipper back home,'' he said.
"Those horses that win races like that have a chance of going over to England to race. You like to see those good horses go worldwide so you can compare them.''
The Maher-Eustace stable has a powerful team of juveniles heading towards the Golden Slipper including early favourite Cellsabeel.
Away Game and Prague get the chance to confirm their legitimacy as Golden Slipper contenders on Saturday.
Marquand said he was pleasantly surprised when he got the call up to ride the talented duo at Randwick.
"I haven't sat on either of them,'' Marquand said. "But I saw Away Game in the Magic Millions so I know plenty about her. Prague was pretty impressive at Canterbury and has the blinkers on for this race. I'm looking forward to riding both of them.''
Marquand has seven rides at the Randwick meeting including the Gary Portelli-trained stablemates, Dio D'Oro in the Sky Racing Active Handicap (1400m) and Ronstar who contests the Ranvet Handicap (1400m).
His Randwick rides come after he has four mounts at Canterbury tonight including last-start winner Sedition in the Agency Real Estate Handicap (1100m).
"Sedition zipped up the home straight pretty well last start and he should be going close again,'' the young jockey said.
"I enjoy riding at the Canterbury night meetings, it's a nice track, there is usually a bit of a crowd and a good atmosphere.''
Marquand's hectic riding schedule means he will have ridden at six meetings in seven days but this is something the jockey is accustomed to back in England.
"From the end of February all the way through to November, you can be riding at nine meetings every week back home,'' he said.
Marquand said he will ride through until the Apollo Stakes meeting at Royal Randwick on February 15 before he returns to England to prepare for the start of the flat season.