Dame for Opal

By: Alex Steedman 

Opal An Option For Everage

A natural progression to the Listed Black Opal Stakes is on the agenda however not certain for Everage after her convincing Lightning Ridge Plate victory at Thoroughbred Park last Sunday.

Randwicktrainer Craig Carmody will nominate Everage for the $250,000 Listed Black Opal Stakes (1200m) at Canberra on March 10 after the Zizou filly delivered as favourite in the Lightning Plate (1000m).

 “We will definitely throw a nomination in for the Black Opal,” Carmody said.

“She has come through the run nicely.

 “She had a big day and didn’t get home until 9pm but she is a tough filly.”

It was a worthwhile trip down the highway for Everage who claimed the Lightning Ridge Plate (1000m) and the $50,000 Inglis Bonus which came with it.

The filly from an inside barrier was tucked in behind the speed and quickly capitalised on clear running when it emerged midway up the straight.

 Everage burst clear with a furlong remaining and from there held her opponents at bay to win by one length.

 “I thought she was outstanding,” Carmody said.

 “I was really happy with her.

“She drew the fence and got put in there for a furlong and a half when the pace slackened a little getting to about the 750m and he [Nathan Berry]really had to restrain her.

“When the gap came when they straightened up I thought her acceleration was really encouraging. She’s got some ability.”

Now with two wins and as many minor placings from four career starts, Everage will continue towards the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m) despite not being entered for the event on April 6.

Whether that ultimate goal will be reached via the Listed Black Opal Stakes (1200m) at Thoroughbred Park is unknown at this point.

 “Leading up to the Slipper there are two or three of those fillies set weights races,” Carmody said.

 “We’ll see how she comes through the next few days. If she really bounces we will throw in a Black Opal nomination and definitely have a look at it.

 “She has had an easy time since Sunday so I will start working her again as of tomorrow and give her a light trot and canter.

 “She is pretty fit now as she’s had those four runs and now the aim is to just keep her at the same level she is currently at.”