Key gear change for Hungry Heart’s return
Ever the perfectionist, Chris Waller admits he made mistakes with Hungry Heart in the spring and he is determined to rectify them this preparation.
The premier trainer has decided to start with a clean slate, taking the blinkers off the filly for her return in the Group Two Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday.
“I just don’t know if she needs them,” Waller said.
“They haven’t done anything for her.”
A daughter of champion Frankel, Hungry Heart claimed the 2020 Sweet Embrace Stakes as a two-year-old but has gone winless in five subsequent starts.
She finished runner-up in three legs of the four-race Princess Series during the spring, including the Group One Flight Stakes when she was edged out by Montefilia.
Waller decided to back her up seven days later in the Thousand Guineas at Caulfield but she raced flat and finished midfield.
“I was disappointed I backed her up in the Thousand Guineas, that was the wrong thing to do,” Waller said.
“She might actually be a pretty sharp horse so 1200 and 1400 excites me to start off a preparation, and if we have to go over further we will. But we’re in no rush.”
A traditional autumn starting point for the three-year-old fillies, the Light Fingers Stakes is one of the few feature races in Sydney that Waller is yet to win.
He did come close two years ago when Madam Rouge was pipped by Nakeeta Jane, while Winx finished seventh in 2015.
Hungry Heart will be one of two runners for him in Saturday’s renewal along with stakes placegetter Joviality, who resumes for Star Thoroughbreds.
Godolphin has won the race twice in the past three years with Alizee (2018) and Flit 12 months ago and they will be represented on Saturday by Thermosphere.