Farnan a star, but Yardstick accounted for him in lead-up to Saturday

Last Saturday morning at Randwick, before the sun came up, a maiden winner was putting it to glamour colt Farnan in a track gallop.

Both Farnan and his trackwork conqueror Yardstick head to Rosehill on Saturday for different assignments.

Farnan runs in the Group 2 Run To The Rose (1200m) where he’s the $2.50 favourite while Yardstick is rated an $8 chance in the lesser Listed Dulcify Stakes (1500m).

“He certainly held his own in a gallop with Farnan but he obviously had a fitness advantage as well,” co-trainer Adrian Bott, who trains the pair of three-year-old colts in partnership with Gai Waterhouse, said.

“It was a good testing gallop for them both and they both got out of it what they needed.”

Yardstick’s work mate last Saturday was the Golden Slipper winner Farnan. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

Yardstick is a son of the stud dud Criterion, a former star middle distance performer which won four Group 1 races.

An impressive midweek debut winner at Canterbury in July, Yardstick found his next assignment “a bridge too far” but Bott believes the inexperienced youngster is much better suited on Saturday.

“We were hoping to see him make significant improvement at his second run and I think it was a bit unfortunate we didn’t quite get to see that from him,” Bott said.

“The way the program was we probably missed a step between his two runs. We had to throw him into the deep end pretty quick.

“The way the Up And Coming panned out on the day, it became quite a messy race for a colt having his second start.

“Racing against more seasoned opposition, there was a bit of pressure, the way the track was playing on the day – it was pretty heavy and they were all getting off the fence.

“He came out to the centre of the track and got very, very lost. That combined with the quick step up in class and the added pressure that comes with that, I think brought about his undoing.”

Yardstick’s trainers Adrian Bott and Gai Waterhouse. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

Yardstick was sent back to the trials following the last start defeat and he accounted for a field of proven open class stakes gallopers in a 1200m contest at Randwick and his regular jockey Nash Rawiller returns to the saddle on Saturday.

“Rather than go to the Ming Dynasty we decided to get him back to the trials, give him some more confidence and I thought he trialled excellent,” Bott said.

“It was a very pleasing trial and he’s come on again from that and I think he goes into Saturday in great shape.

“The distance should suit. I really like the way he’s trained on, he’s really thriving at the moment.

“I really think he goes into Saturday off a platform that gives him every chance to redeem himself.

“I think he’s a very talented horse.”

Yardstick, along with Farnan, was one of 10 three-year-olds among the entries earlier this week for the $1 million TAB Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Randwick on October 3 and he also holds an entry seven days later into the $2 million Caulfield Guineas over the same trip.

“It’s obviously a bit of ‘let’s see what happens’ but we do feel he’s an above average colt,” Bott said.

“Whether we look to a Caulfield Guineas or an Epsom Handicap, he has to take some significant steps and quickly.

“It’s difficult to be winning big Group One races like those mentioned in a first racing campaign.

“We’ll just see what transpires on Saturday and go from there. One step at a time.”

TAB.com.au has Yardstick listed as a $101 chance for both the Epsom Handicap and the Caulfield Guineas.

Originally published asIf the Slipper winner is the Yardstick – bring on the Dulcify

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