Racing: Chance to dance in Sydney Cup

By AAP, NZ Racing Desk

For take two of the A$2 million group one Sydney Cup at Randwick today. Photo / 123RF
For take two of the A$2 million group one Sydney Cup at Randwick today. Photo / 123RF

The Chance To Dance team believe their recent acquisition is in good touch for take two of the A$2 million group one Sydney Cup at Randwick today.

"He seems bright and happy enough and we haven't done much with him, he's fit enough," said Jamie Richards, who trains the son of Teofilo with Stephen Autridge.

"He had a nice gallop on Tuesday morning and Christian Reith came in and rode him and he'll be on him on Saturday."

Meanwhile, Bobby El-Issa says he's where he belongs ahead of the cancer survivor's biggest ride yet, the Sydney Cup.

He will be aboard Lee Curtis-trained Lasqueti Spirit in the re-run today following the declaration of a no-race on April 8 when Almoonqith fatally broke down and Who Shot Thebarman lost his rider.

El-Issa, who returned to to sport last April following a battle with leukaemia, says it will be his biggest ride yet. "I believe this is [the] level I deserve to be at. I always have," he said.

Given Lasqueti Spirit's habit of taking a little while to get going, El-Issa said he would need to watch how she jumped out of the barrier but she would eventually get to the lead.

"She's drawn barrier 10 so I think it's a positive because I've got runners to my outside and hopefully I don't get cluttered up early," he said.

"So she can maybe take a bit longer to muster her speed."

The three-year-old filly won the VRC Oaks in November, taking the lead mid-race and drawing further ahead the further they went.

This campaign she has run second to Winx in the Chipping Norton Stakes on February 25 and third in the Australian Oaks.

"I think she's a strong filly - she's proven that. It's obviously yet to be seen whether she'll get to 3200 [metres] but there's a lot of horses at the question mark also," El-Issa said.

"The way she races and the weight she's got [51.5kg], I think we're definitely at an advantage."

- NZ Racing Desk, AAP

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