Tommy Berry has partnered some of Sydney’s best emerging horses this spring, a trend set to continue at Rosehill where he again has a book of rides top-heavy with talent.
Having won the first two legs of the Princess series aboard boom filly Libertini, the San Domenico Stakes on Exceedance and the Toy Show Quality on improving mare Mizzy, Berry’s carnival is off to a flying start.
And he has not just been busy on the track – he and wife Sharnee have celebrated the birth of their fourth child and third son, Nate, on Friday.
But Berry’s focus come race day will be firmly on Rosehill with his headline act Exceedance, the early favourite in a Run To The Rose (1200m) field packed with above-average three-year-old talent.
He will also partner Mizzy for the in-form Anthony Cummings stable in the Sheraco Stakes (1200m), Reformist for the powerful Chris Waller yard in the Dulcify Quality (1500m) and he will be charged with chasing a first black-type success for the Hawkes Racing-trained Trope in the Theo Marks Stakes (1300m).
“The spring is looking good. I seem to be getting nice books every Saturday which is great to see,” Berry said.
The lightly raced Trope possesses a booming finish and was narrowly denied a first-up victory in the Show County Quality when edged out by Deprive.
His racing pattern has been to settle back in the field and charge home, although Berry says that has been largely dictated by wide barrier draws, something he again faces on Saturday.
Trope has a tough task against former Perth mare, Group One winner Arcadia Queen, the under-rated Gem Song and seasoned campaigners Deploy and Tom Melbourne but if he is to reach the heights expected, Berry says the horse must rise to the challenge.
“If he’s going to step up and match it with these better horses this spring then he’s got to perform well,” he said.
“Even though he’s up against more experienced horses, he’s shown he’s got quality and he’s got to raise the bar now for him to continue on in the spring to the races we’ve set, or even better.”
Trope is second elect at $5 behind odds-on favourite Arcadia Queen, while Mizzy is also hard in the market and is the same price for her assignment.
Mizzy twice finished fourth at Group One level in the autumn and proved she had returned in top order with a first-up stakes win last month.
She was impressive in a race day gallop at Randwick last Saturday and her on-pace racing style means she makes her own luck.
“She’s going super and she’s a tough mare. She puts herself on the speed and she’s always hard to beat,” Berry said.