On track with OTI – January 21

A busy period beckons as the autumn draws near. With feature racing fast approaching, we’ll look to keep you updated with as much as possible on all things happening on the track with OTI.

English import Corncrake will make his Australian debut on Wednesday at Canterbury (Race 5 – 4:40pm AEDT) in a Bm78 over 1550m for trainer Matthew Smith. The 4yo son of Mastercraftsman strung together a hat-trick of wins in the UK before making the journey out and looks a stayer of promise who has continued to please his new trainer. As is the case with many overseas horses we expect him to further improve out in distance as he continues to acclimatize but tomorrow promises to be the start of an exciting chapter for connections.

Group 1 placed Night’s Watch & progressive stayer Attorney have shown they are both right on track in the past week at the trials in Sydney. Night’s Watch is ahead of schedule this time around and trainer Chris Waller is thrilled with how he’s come back from his summer spell. Trialling last Tuesday over 900m at Rosehill he put in a very sharp piece of work with jockey James McDonald reporting that he felt fantastic underneath him. Night’s Watch will trial again this Thursday in what will be his final lead up to a return, most likely to be in the Group 1 C.F. Orr Stakes at Caulfield (1400m) on February 8.

Below: Watch a replay of Night’s Watch’ recent Rosehill trial


A patient approach has been taken with Attorney after being given some time in the paddock over the spring and early part of the summer but a racetrack return nears. Matthew Smith and jockey Jason Collett have been effusive in their praise with his trial at Warwick Farm this morning leaving both delighted. Expect him to trial once more again in coming weeks before a return is plotted.

An eye must always be on the future and with that in mind work has really increased for a handful of big race aspirants led by the promising Chaillot. The unbeaten filly hasn’t been seen since winning the Listed Anzac Day Stakes at Flemington on April 25 last year, where she took the scalp of subsequent Caulfield Guineas winner, Super Seth. Spring ambitions were put on hold due to an injury enforced lay off but with time and the diligent work of trainer Archie Alexander and his team at Ballarat we hope to see her deliver on her potential in the coming months. Chaillot will trial tomorrow before kick starting her campaign in the early part of February.

An evergreen Gallic Chieftain hopes to have his say in autumn affairs. Runner up in last year’s Group 1 Metropolitan Handicap, the 7yo will ramp things up at the trials early next month and we are encouraged about how well he has done spelling.

Another pair of note are fellow lightly raced filly Selica and an improver in Inverloch. Selica (now with Phillip Stokes) possesses above average ability and we look forward to seeing what level she may be able to get to over the coming months. Inverloch has been an eye-catcher on the training track and Busuttin Racing will give him one more tune up at the trials before his prep gets underway at Caulfield on C.F. Orr Stakes Day.

With a host of quality racing on the horizon we wish the best of luck to all OTI connections!