One-time favourite Funstar is set to fly the flag for the Chris Waller camp in next Saturday’s Doncaster Mile however the trainer is holding out hope the mare can be joined by one of his emerging three-year-olds.
A year after saddling up eight runners in the $3 million feature including runner-up Star Of The Seas, Waller’s is poised to field a significantly smaller team in 2021.
“We probably just have Funstar,” Waller said.
“In previous years I would have been enticed by a horse like Shared Ambition after winning on Saturday and Mister Sea Wolf with the likes of Kolding or Star of The Seas.
Funstar will run in the Doncaster. Photo: Jenny Evans/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images
“But it is really hard on them. They are carrying big weights and the horses down in the weights coming through the grades have such a big advantage.
“I think I will keep most of those old boys home.”
Group 1 winner Funstar hasn’t tasted a victory since the Group 2 Phar Lap Stakes more than 12 months ago and is coming off an eighth in the George Ryder Stakes when she found trouble in the straight.
Waller believes she can bounce back with a lightweight of 52kg in the Doncaster with Craig Williams booked to ride.
“Funstar hasn’t had much luck,” Waller said.
“She is just like Hungry Heart and she needs that sniff of a victory or a confidence booster to get her right in it.”
While Funstar is his stable’s top seed, Waller was also keen for his three-year-old Wheelhouse to join the daughter of Adelaide.
Wheelhouse (left/red) was fourth in the Randwick Guineas. Photo: Mark Evans/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
Wheelhouse is down in 72nd spot in the Doncaster order of entry and would need a high attrition rate to earn a start.
Waller has decided not to push on towards the Australian Derby with Wheelhouse, which is $15 in betting, in favour of the keeping the son of Pierro over shorter trips after he finished fifth in the Rosehill Guineas behind Mo’unga.
“He has pulled up well but I think he struggled to stay the other day,” Waller said.
“We would like him to get into the Doncaster and if he doesn’t get in he will run in the Carbine Club.
“He is just a typical lightweight three-year-old that would certainly have his chance based on my experience.
“I would love him to make the field and if he doesn’t, he doesn’t.”
Wheelhouse is a $101 chance in the Doncaster.
Originally published asSmall team for Waller in Doncaster
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