Bird Catcher to snatch the win
FITZROY Glispie's BIRD CATCHER catches the eye in tomorrow's 1100-metre Titania Trophy despite not running in a sprint since January 9.
Undoubtedly the most improved three-year-old local-bred filly in training, BIRD CATCHER narrowly missed fourth place behind Oaks upsetter A THOUSAND STARS. She was touched off close home and placed fifth, three lengths off A THOUSAND STARS, who beat howling favourite NUCLEAR AFFAIR by a head.
Since stretched out by Glispie when beaten at a mile by the colt JAMAI RAJA, on February 13, BIRD CATCHER has been showing her class over a distance of ground.
She was second in the 1400-metre Thornbird Stakes behind NUCLEAR AFFAIR. In her subsequent race, she lost second on the line in the Guineas, nipped at the wire by A THOUSAND STARS and SORRENTINO'S STAR.
Her Oaks run was another big effort, chasing the pace down the backstretch and staying on up the lane to finish a close-up fifth.
Reverting to a sprint might seem a bit odd but clearly indicates that Glispie is bypassing next weekend's open Lotto Classic Governor's Cup against colts and geldings.
A shrewd trainer, he has prepared BIRD CATCHER well, changing her routine of long pace gallops to a sharp six-furlong sprint last Friday morning. She responded well, clocking 1:13.1, fastest at the distance that morning.
No stranger to sprints, BIRD CATCHER clocked an impressive 1:07.0 at 1100 metres in December, beating speedy stablemate GLOBAL. She returned three weeks later and lost by a neck to the colt CRUISING MOTION at 1200 metres.
Carl Anderson's DREAMING THE CODE is the speed in the 13-horse line-up. However, she is yet to reproduce the form with which she debuted last October when beating BIRDCATCHER by a dozen lengths at 1100 metres.
In the 1000 Guineas, especially, BIRD CATCHER had waltzed past DREAMING THE CODE three furlongs out, making her move to tackle the leaders before NUCLEAR AFFAIR pounced and trounced the field.