Trainer Patrick Payne has made a late decision to change Cherry Tortoni’s spring plans, bypassing the 2020 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) in favour of the Spring Champion Stakes (2000m) in Sydney.
Cherry Tortoni’s spring plan was always to head to the Guineas on the way to his grand final, the 2020 VRC Derby, but Melbourne’s wet weather has prompted the change from the camp.
‘’It looks like it could be wet in Melbourne and I think he’ll struggle to finish top five in the Caulfield Guineas, but is a realistic first three chance in the Champion Stakes,’’ said Payne.
‘’The testing we’ve done with him at home and in trials and stuff, he’s much better on top of the ground. On shifting ground, he’s nowhere near as effective.’’
The markets were quick to react to the change of plans, with Cherry Tortoni now the third favourite for the Spring Champion Stakes at $5, with Love Tap ($3.40), and Montefilia ($3.60) ahead of him in the market.