Karijini Aurora will face stiff opposition in the Listed Raconteur Stakes (1400m) at Belmont on Saturday, but trainer Summer Dickson declares she’ll be up for the challenge.
“I ride this horse every day, so I know what she is capable of,” Dickson told The Races WA.
“I know there are good horses in the race, but I think she is one too.
“You never know how good they are until you are in it. You never know.”
The good horses Dickson refers to are headlined by Kay Cee and Laverrod, the TAB market leaders.
Kay Cee underlined her credentials last year when she won the Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) in December for trainer Neville Parnham.
A win in the Burgess Queen Stakes (1400m) and placings in the WA Guineas (1600m) and Champion Fillies Stakes (1600m) were entrees to her weight-for-age triumph in the Kingston Town Classic.
The daughter of Playing God looks spot on for her return after winning two barrier trials. Parnham says the filly is as fit as he can get her and she is forward enough to win.
Laverrod, from the in-form Sean and Jake Casey team, had a taste of stakes races last year when placed in the Placid Ark Stakes (1200m) and Lee Steere Stakes (1400m).
The Tornado gelding boasts a consistent record of four wins and with six placings he has not finished out of the money from 10 starts.
He’s hunting for a winning hat trick after defeating Festival Miss, a subsequent winner last Saturday, at his previous outing three weeks back.
Karijini Aurora goes into the Raconteur Stakes as the least experienced runner in the field of seven starters, but she knows how to find the line.
The Trade Fair filly resumes after winning the Ladies Bracelet (1600m) at Albany in April, her third straight win since a debut fourth in Bunbury.
“She appreciated the time off and gained a little bit of weight,” Dickson said.
“She looks the best as she has ever looked.
“She’s been working as good as she ever has, if not better.
“She has definitely not gone downhill.”
Karijini Aurora is Dickson’s stable flag bearer, a handy acquisition for a young trainer early into her training career.
Just over a year since she scored her first city win in Perth with Summer Skye, Dickson contests her first stakes race in the Raconteur Stakes.
“I’m just lucky to have a horse of that quality in my stable,” Dickson said.
“The good thing about her is that you don’t have to teach her to win, she wants to win.
“I will feel a lot better after the race, I will be happy if she runs a good race.”
The Raconteur Stakes is the first-leg of a winter treble for Karijini Aurora. The Belmont Guineas (1600m) and Belmont Oaks (2000m) is on Dickson’s radar.
Karijini Aurora is a $13 chance with the Tab. Laverrod is the $2.10 favourite with Kay Cee next at $2.90.
Jade McNaught will ride Karijini Aurora.