Chris Waller believes last-start winner Tales Of Grimm now has the confidence to win the Winter Stakes.
Tales Of Grimm had his first win for Waller in the Listed Spear Chief Handicap at Eagle Farm on June 25.
Waller said that win gave the seven-year-old an important confidence boost ahead of the Listed Winter Stakes at Rosehill on Saturday.
“It was good to get a horse like that back into winning form because I think it means a lot to those older horses,” Waller said.
“They get used to running into bad luck and it’s often disheartening, but they’ve got the ability.”
Waller sees similarities between Tales Of Grimm and the topweight in the race, the Peter Robl-trained Ninth Legion who spent more than 16 months out of the winner’s circle before stringing together two stakes wins in the past month.
Waller says the step back from 1500 to 1400 metres is no concern for Tales Of Grimm who he believes is well weighted with 56.5kg.
The gelding will be the widest runner in the race, but that doesn’t worry Waller.
“He’s not the best of the barrier horses. He likes to be back in the second half of the field,” Waller said.
The stable’s other runner in the race is one-time Epsom Handicap prospect Marenostro.
But after disappointing at his past two starts, Waller said Marenostro needs to step up.
“I think he was suspect at the mile with a big weight two starts ago,” Waller said.
“Last start he was shunted three-wide and didn’t get any cover on a pretty quick track, a firmer track.”
Marenostro has drawn barrier one and has four wins and three placings on a heavy track.
But a clear weather forecast and strong winds are likely to mean an upgrade at Rosehill before Saturday.
“The wetter the track the better for him,” Waller said.
The Paul Perry-trained Wouldnt It Be Nice has drawn outside Marenostro in barrier two, while the Peter and Paul Snowden-trained Snippets Land has gate five.
Ninth Legion and Oxford Poet are the $5 equal favourites in early markets with Tales Of Grimm at $6.