Next Level notched the latest juvenile win for More Than Ready when he lived up to some flash trial form at Warwick Farm on Wednesday.
The promising youngster was racing first-up after a five-month spell and put the field away with a sharp sprint in the Drummond Golf Hcp (1100m). “He been trialling well,” trainer Gary Portelli said. “And when Damien (Thornton) decided to hit the ‘go’ button, he went right pass them and was strong to the line.”
Next Level (2g More Than Ready – St. Kate by Danehill) had been unplaced at Rosehill and Randwick earlier this season but looked a difference horse defeating Sniper Fire (High Chaparral) by a half-length.
“He has always shown ability and still has plenty to learn,” Portelli added. “But it was good to see him do it when it counted on race day.”
Bred and sold by Baramul Stud for $125,000 at the 2013 Gold Coast Magic Millions, he is a half-brother to Sydney stakes winner Kakakakatie (Zeditave) from the family of Group 1 winners Bonanova, Telesto and Fraternity.
Next Level is nominated for the Group 1 J J Atkins Stakes (1600m) at Eagle Farm on June 7. “He will be suited over 1400m and 1600m,” Portelli added. “And whether we go north or not, he’s still going to make a very nice horse next season.”
More Than Ready has been a mainstay among the top bracket of Australia’s two year-old stallions since siring Carry On Cutie (G1 Champagne Stakes) and Perfectly Ready (G3 Blue Diamond Prelude) in his first crop.
His current crop of juveniles is headed by Caulfield G3 Chairman’s Stakes winner Nayeli.
The Vinery champion also sired a couple of promising three year-old winners this week starting with the Mick Price trained filly Vintage Drop at Sandown on Wednesday. She carries Vinery’s green and white silks and is a stablemate of More Than Ready’s Group 1 winning sprinter Samaready.
Gai Waterhouse weighed in with More Than Ready filly Sugar Rush at Gosford on Thursday. She was racing first-up since an extended spell going back to last August.
More Than Ready filly Vivi Veloce takes on older horses in the G3 R A Lee Stakes at Morphettville this Saturday. She was a Group 3 winner of the National Stakes in Adelaide a year ago this weekend.
And at Flemington on Saturday, More Than Ready three year-old Nicamorae will be gunning for a hat-trick in the Spotless Plate down the straight-six. The Lindsay Park filly is a half-sister to Group 1 winners Niconero and Nicconi and will be facing her stiffest test at headquarters against Black Caviar’s half – sister Belle Couture.
Vinery will stand More Than Ready for a $66,000 (inc gst) service fee this year.
– Karl Patterson