Roger James is confident there is further improvement to come from Silent Achiever as she heads toward her Sydney grand final.
The Cambridge trainer was encouraged by the O’Reilly mare’s effort for fifth in the Gr.1 Ranvet Stakes (2000m) with a view to her April 6 return to Rosehill for the main prize.
“She’s come through the race well and unlike any other time of her career, especially in Australia, she has really thrived and her main aim has always been the BMW,” James said.
“I was walking on eggshells with her last autumn and an in the spring, but she’s a different horse altogether now. She will strip fitter for the run as well.”
Silent Achiever finished just over four lengths from the winner Foreteller on Saturday after getting back in the field.
“They went hard up front and they were finding it hard all day to make up any ground,” James said. “Only one of those came from behind her to beat her home and that was Maluckyday.
“We went wide on the turn and he came through closer to the fence. The BMW will be run at a different tempo altogether and we know she likes the mile and a-half.”
Silent Achiever’s career highlight came at the 2400 metre trip last season when she beat Rock ‘N’ Pop in the Gr.1 Telecom New Zealand Derby.
Meanwhile, Zonza will have the opportunity at Ellerslie this weekend to press her claims to meet up with her stablemate in Sydney.
“She’s done well and she’ll run at Auckland on Saturday and then we’ll decide,” James said.
Bred and raced by Brendan and Jo Lindsay, the lightly-tried daughter of Zabeel was a winner and stakes placed as a three-year-old in the Listed Mad Butcher Championship Prelude.
Immaturity issues sidelined her for a lengthy period before she returned for an impressive second-up victory at Hastings earlier this month.