2016 Run To The Rose Vital for Waller Runners

August 23rd, 2016

Trainer Chris Waller is eager to saddle talented stable mates Cellarman and Nikitas in the 2016 Group 2 The Run To The Rose (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.

Cellarman is one of two Chris Waller-trained runners poised to line up for Saturday's 2016 Run To The Rose. Photo: Daniel Costello

Cellarman is one of two Chris Waller-trained runners poised to line up for Saturday’s 2016 Run To The Rose. Photo: Daniel Costello

Cellarman has been a strong and consistent performer or Waller through a short but impressive racing career so far; posting one win and two minors through four starts, highlighted by a comfortable triumph in the Listed Wintergarden Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm last time out on June 25th.

Having trialled well in the lead-up to his competitive return, Waller told AAP that he is will use Cellarman’s performance in the 2016 Run To The Rose as an indicator as to whether or not he is up to the quality of the Group 1 Golden Rose (1400m) in a fortnight.

“The Run To The Rose will tell us if Cellarman has made sufficient improvement to run in the Golden Rose,” Waller said.

“It’s a big step from two to three.”

Nikitas began his racing career under the guidance of notable Queensland trainer Kelso Wood, but has been transferred to Waller’s Rosehill Gardens base with a view towards targeting major 2016 Spring Carnival targets.

Waller has been thrilled with the class displayed by the Snitzel colt thus far, though concedes the team is still learning what he reacts to.

“Nikitas is a nice horse.” Waller said.

“He is still fairly new to the stable and we are still learning about him.”

Nikitas debuted to racing for success in a Doomben minor over 1200m in December; progressing to third in the Group 3 McLachlan Stakes (1200m) before finishing second behind Capitalist in the Gold Coast Magic Millions 2.y.o Guineas (1200m) on January 9th.

Clearly requiring a run when eighth in the Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m) first-up in winter, Nikitas responded with a tough run for third in the Group 2 BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m) but failed to make anything of an impression late in his major campaign target; the Group 1 JJ Atkins (1600m).

The 2016 Run To The Rose field and barrier draw is due to be completed and released by midday, Wednesday (August 24th).

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