Australian Thoroughbred

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Jul 10 2020 Viridine in peak form for G3 Sir John Monash Stakes at Caulfield

In-form sprinter Viridine has his opposition and Covid-19 restrictions to deal with if he is to add Saturday’s G3 Sir John Monash Stakes at Caulfield to his record.

But trainer James Cummings is confident his team, and his horse, can handle both and take his racetrack earnings to a tick under $1 million.

Viridine (Damien Oliver), who claimed the seventh win of his career last start at Randwick, makes his bid for a fifth Stakes victory backed by well-deserved stable confidence.

“His Randwick win was very satisfying. To turn the tables on some of his rivals there with a big weight and on a heavy track at the 1,200m was a very good effort,”

“We’re back to Melbourne on Saturday where his most recent experience was also good win at Sandown at the end of last spring.”

Viridine is scheduled to travel to Melbourne on Wednesday night, but newly-announced Covid-19 regulations that have restricted movement across NSW-Victorian border, meaning he will be unable to return to his Sydney stables for up to six weeks.

The border restrictions also mean any staff who accompany the horse to Melbourne will have to be quarantined for 14 days on their return to Sydney.

For Cummings, the opportunity to win another Stakes race before the Australian season ends on July 31 is well worth the effort.

“Viridine is a horse who has run well against some of the best opposition around and he showed last start he was in excellent form,” he said.

As a three-year-old Viridine won four on end before tackling the G1 Coolmore Classic at Flemington where he finished less than three lengths behind Merchant Navy. He has also performed strongly behind star sprinter Redzel and his G1-winning stablemate Trekking.

“As well as winning at Sandown last spring, he ran well at Caulfield when he finished fourth to Trekking in the Schillaci Stakes over Saturday’s trip,” Cummings said.

“He’s continued to build good confidence and he’s been up and about since the Randwick win, so I’m sending him down to Melbourne satisfied that he’s capable of performing to the standard he’s set for himself.”

In early betting markets Viridine is the early favourite at $2.50. Check out the latest betting markets.