Silent Achiever pleases James, McEvoy

Roger James couldn’t be any happier with Silent Achiever (O’Reilly) in the wake of her first-up run for fifth in Saturday’s Apollo Stakes (1400m) at Randwick.

The Cambridge trainer was back in New Zealand on Tuesday but not before ensuring the star O’Reilly mare had come through the race to his satisfaction.
Just as she had done with her race performance on Saturday, Silent Achiever exceeded James’ expectations on that front as well.

“She trotted up yesterday very free and had a canter this morning and she was sharp and as bright as a button,” James said.

“I thought her run on Saturday was super. She had quite a tough trip – third-last and three wide without cover and she got flushed wide on the turn.
“To Kerrin’s [jockey Kerrin McEvoy’s] credit, he was disappointed himself with the ride he gave her. But he said she really attacked the line and gave him a terrific feel over the last 250m. He was very upbeat about the run. He just said he would have liked to have given her a softer run.

“I went back and watched the replay and they were all talking up Lucia Valentina’s run and while she did run very well, I thought our run was every bit as good, if not better considering we had a tougher run.”
Bred and raced by Kevin Hickman, Silent Achiever will have her next run in the Gr.1 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Warwick Farm on February 28 before tackling the Gr.1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) at Rosehill on March 21.

James will then toss up between the Gr.1 The BMW (2400m) at Rosehill the following week and the Gr.1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) at Randwick on April 11.

Silent Achiever is likely to be joined in Sydney by stablemate Delago’s Secret, who ran an encouraging fifth to Rising Romance at Ellerslie on Saturday in his first run since winning the Gr.3 City Of Auckland Cup (2400m) at Ellerslie on New Year’s Day.

“He’ll have one more run here, possibly in the New Zealand Stakes, and then all going well, he’ll head to Sydney for the Manion Cup, the Chairman’s Handicap and possibly the Sydney Cup,” James said.

The Gr.3 Manion Cup (2400m) is run at Rosehill on March 21, with the Gr.2 Chairman’s Handicap (2600m) at Randwick on April 4 and the Gr.1 Sydney Cup (3200m) run at Randwick on April 11. – NZ Racing Desk

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