Gallops - News

Contessa Vanessa in top shape ahead of Oaks

  • Thu, 12 Apr 2018
  • NZ Racing Desk
Contessa Vanessa has delighted connections with her Oaks build-up.

Contessa Vanessa has delighted connections with her Oaks build-up.

Graeme Rogerson says talented filly Contessa Vanessa makes his job easy.

The New Zealand Racing Hall of Fame trainer has the Bullbars three-year-old in prime condition ahead of Saturday's A$1 million Gr. 1 Australian Oaks at Randwick, though he concedes that's mainly her own doing.

"She's such a tough thing. She's eaten every oat we've given her since she got here and she worked a mile and a quarter (2000m) this morning and she was full of running," Rogerson said.

"She'll certainly run the mile and a half (2400m) on Saturday. I looked over her run in the New Zealand Oaks again and she just had to do a bit much. She wasn't far away from Savvy Coup and while that filly has to be hard to beat again, I don't think there's much between them."

Contessa Vanessa is having her 11th start this season on Saturday, having distinguished herself with wins in the Gr. 2 Eight Carat Classicand Gr. 3 Sunline Vase and placings in the Gr. 3 Eulogy Stakes, Gr. 2 Royal Stakes and Gr. 1 New Zealand Oaks.

But Rogerson said she had continued to thrive and even picked up again now she was in Sydney.

"She's a great traveller. She just eats, works and sleeps. She makes it easy for me as a trainer," Rogerson said. "She's doing exceptionally well and I think she'll run really well."

TAB bookmakers don't share Rogerson's confidence and have Contessa Vanessa as a $16 outsider for the Oaks, which also features Kiwi fillies Savvy Coup ($7.50), Danzdanzdance ($17) and (She's A) Treasure ($34).

Rogerson said Contessa Vanessa would go back to New Zealand next Tuesday, but he wasn't ruling out a return trip to Australia for the Gr. 1 Australasian Oaks at Morphettville on May 5.

"Nothing is out of the question with three-year-olds. We'll just see, as long as she's eating well and going along like she is now," he said.