Leading Otago trainers Brian and Shane Anderton are set to make their presence felt with two well-credentialled runners in Sunday’s $50,000 Cromwell Cup (2030m).
Shane Anderton expects the step up to 2030m to be ideal for Capo Dell Impero and Burgie, who are both coming out of the Group 3 Coupland’s Bakeries Mile (1600m) during last month’s New Zealand Cup Carnival in Christchurch.
Capo Dell Impero produced one of the eye-catching performances in that $250,000 feature, finishing strongly out of the back half of the field to finish fifth. He ended up only 2.8 lengths behind Puntura, and he clocked a slick 33.46 for his last 600m – half a second faster than the winner.
“I thought it was a bloody great run,” Anderton said. “He was one of the few in the field who made up ground. They were coming from the back in the early part of that day, but in that race the first four around the corner were the first four home. He did a really good job to finish it off the way he did.”
Anderton is looking forward to seeing Capo Dell Impero step back up over a middle-distance. This will be the Ghibellines gelding’s first attempt at the unique 2030m trip, but his two starts at 2000m have produced a three-length win in the Hornby Club Founders Cup and a runner-up finish behind Times Ticking in the Group 3 Canterbury Gold Cup.
“We’ve been quite happy with him since his last-start run,” Anderton said. “The mile is short enough for him and he’s really looking for that 2000m now.
“He’s had a good build-up to the race. The only thing that hasn’t quite gone to plan is that he’s drawn a bit awkwardly with a wide gate (15). We’ll have to ride him for a bit of luck and hope that we can get some cover.”
The increased distance is also expected to favour Capo Dell Impero’s talented stablemate Burgie. The daughter of Ghibellines won the Listed Warstep Stakes over 2000m as a three-year-old. She stuck mainly to 1600m last season, placing in the Group 3 South Island Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes in March, and Anderton was satisfied with her last-start eighth in the Coupland’s Mile.
“She’s another one who’s crying out for more ground,” he said. “I thought her run in the Coupland’s was pretty good too. Kozzi (Asano, jockey) just said she got held up at the wrong time. We’ve been happy enough with how she’s been doing since the race.
“Both of our runners will really appreciate the step up to 2000m this weekend and should be nice chances in the race.”
The stable has 10 entries throughout Sunday’s card, and another interesting runner is Exchange. The six-race winner is making his first start since April.
“He’s had a jumpout and did a pretty good job in that,” Anderton said. “His work’s been good. We wouldn’t be surprised at all if he proved to be pretty competitive first-up.”