Private Dancer Eyes Oaks Riches

Feb 17, 2018

WA Champion Fillies Stakes runner-up Private Dancer will commence her WA Oaks campaign this Saturday, when she lines up in the Owners Only-Supporting WA Racehorse Owners Handicap (1400m) at Ascot.

The Oratorio filly emerged as one of the star fillies during the spring, with her runner-up performance to Art Series in the Champion Fillies, before she was beaten seven lengths by Perfect Jewel the following week in the Group 2 WA Guineas.

Private Dancer tuned up for her first-up run with a strong trial effort over 1000m at Belmont on February 5, when she was beaten three lengths by Festive Excess.

Andrews is no stranger to success in WA’s feature three-year-old races, having won the WA Oaks and Derby previously, and said he had the right type of filly to figure prominently in this year’s features.

“She’s quite a good size filly,” he said.

“She is 518kg, I had Natasha win the WA Oaks and Derby and she was only 460kg.

“This filly will trim up a bit as she has a few runs.”

Jarrad Noske rode Private Dancer in her trial last week, and Andrews said he was happy to have him on this week, despite the filly having to carry 59kg this week.

“I could have probably claimed off her on Saturday, but I wanted her to have a safe run, so that is why I have put Jarrad on,” he said.

“He will be patient and let her do her best work late.

“Jarrad said she felt like she had plenty of stamina about her.”

Ross Price’s unbeaten gelding Arctic Stream opened a $2.75 favourite for the 1400m event, while Private Dancer is on the seventh line of betting in what shapes up as an open affair.

Andrews said he was mindful of the long campaign ahead of Private Dancer, and admitted she would take plenty of benefit from the first-up assignment.

“She steps up to the Challenge Stakes, the 1000 Guineas, the Natasha Stakes and WA Oaks after this,” he said.

“She’s got a long prep in front of her but I’m really pleased with her progress.”

The Owners Only-Supporting WA Racehorse Owners Handicap jumps at 4.05pm on Saturday afternoon.