Rock Diva camp guided by Miss Mossman in Sydney

The decision to take Wellfield NZ Oaks winner Miss Mossman to Sydney for the Gr. 1 Australian Oaks has played into the hands of the connections of Cambridge filly Rock Diva.

Following her decisive win over Miss Selby and Rock Diva at Trentham last weekend, Miss Mossman is to be aimed at the Gr. 1 A$1 million ATC Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on April 19.

While Miss Mossman will be settling into the Sydney stable of her senior trainer John Sargent, Rock Diva will be freshening up following her brave third in the Oaks.

“She pulled up quite well but is having 10 days in the paddock,” said co-trainer Tony Pike. “We’ll then get her ready for Brisbane. The Queensland Oaks will be her main goal.

“We’ll be able to get a good line on the Aussie fillies through Miss Mossman going for the Oaks in Sydney.  It’ll be interesting to see how she measures up.”

Rock Diva was beaten six lengths by Miss Mossman last weekend after having no luck in the running.

“The trip she had it was impossible to win,” said Pike. “When she got checked at the 1200 metres it pretty much finished the race for her. She was out three-deep from the 600 to make her run. It was a brave effort.”

Pike says the decision has yet to be made on the next start for the Lucky Unicorn filly. “She will either run at Te Rapa on the 26th (of April) or in the Gold Coast Bracelet,” he said. The Gr. 1 A$400,000 Queensland Oaks (2400m) is at Eagle Farm on May 31.

Pike and training partner, Mark Donoghue, will have three runners at Tauranga on Saturday with the main interest being on last-start winner Chintz in the feature, the Gr. 2 $100,000 Windsor Park Stud Japan NZ International Trophy.

Also representing the stable at Tauranga will be Kelly O’Reilly in the Bayleys Country 1300 and the promising young galloper Sancerre in the Triton Pacific Owen Plate 3YO.

“Kelly O’Reilly has trained on well since she ran second at Ellerslie and she won’t mind the bit of rain we had,” said Pike. “Sancerre is a really nice progressive filly. She won her debut well and this has come up a strong three-year-old. We should get a good line on her.”