Mediterranean’s rise to become Peter and Paul Snowden’s sole Golden Rose hope seemed unlikely a month ago.
Capitalist was favourite for the Golden Rose while Mediterranean’s best effort on a racecourse was a dominant midweek victory at Canterbury.
But the father-son training team altered their plan for the $1 million Group One race after Golden Slipper winner Capitalist failed to fire first-up in the Group Three San Domenico Stakes.
Mediterranean, who is related to Capitalist and also races in James Harron Bloodstock’s green and gold silks, now carries the stable’s hopes in Saturday’s feature at Rosehill.
Senior trainer Peter Snowden has vowed to leave no stone unturned as he applies blinkers to Mediterranean in a bid to cause a Golden Rose boilover.
“I think now’s the time to put them on just to keep him focused,” Snowden said.
“I’ve been thinking about it for a while. I worked him in them a couple of times and he worked a bit sharper with them on.”
Snowden said Mediterranean has been crying out for 1400m and will benefit from barrier five.
“He gets the trip, it’s a good draw and it is a grand final so I’m not leaving any stone unturned,” Snowden said.
Mediterranean was fifth in the Run To The Rose, with the first six over the line to run in the Golden Rose.
While Omei Sword is the Chris Waller-trained runner headlining the market at $3.80, he believes stablemate Nikitas is a knockout chance.
“He’s entitled to be the forgotten horse,” Waller said.
“He’s got the ability of a good horse. His run in the Magic Millions would show that.”
Nikitas ran second to Capitalist in the Magic Millions Classic when trained by Kelso Wood.
Waller said Nikitas was unlucky in the Run To The Rose, his first start for his new stable, finishing sixth after sitting three wide facing the breeze.
“The 1400 metres will suit him better and obviously the first-up run will tighten him up significantly,” Waller said.
“He’s definitely a top five chance and he’s a chance at going better.”
Mediterranean is at $26 for the Golden Rose and Nikitas has been turned in from $71 to $51.