A standout performer in each of her racing preparation so-far, co-trainer James Cummings has revealed Norzita will make a long-awaited return from injury during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival, for a Cox Plate campaign that is likely to include a stop-off in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) on October 4th.
Failing to finish outside the places over five impressive starts through the 2013 autumn carnival, Norzita returned to racing for third in the Group 3 Show County Quality (1200m) on August 24th, however was forced back into the spelling paddock after suffering a tendon injury in the lead-up to the Tramway Stakes.
Pleased with the continually building form of the two-time Group 1 champion, Cummings told Racing Ahead the 2014 edition of the Group 2 Tramway Stakes (1400m) on September 6th is likely to figure as the ideal first-up run for Norzita this time.
“Her leg looks good, she’s still a bit hairy, but she’s a pretty happy mare at the minute,” Cummings said.
“She’s feeling well about herself and she seems very enthusiastic to be back in work, which are good signs from our perspective. Hopefully she keeps going in such a positive way.
“She’s back doing a little bit more work and we might give her a trial or an exhibition gallop somewhere in the middle of August and we’re thinking, at this early stage, about resuming in a race like the Tramway.”
Yet to set a path in stone for the rising five-year-old through spring, Cummings said he believes Norzita will in fact hit peak condition around the time of the Group 1 Myer Classic (1600m) on November 1st.
“We’ll probably nominate for races like the Epsom and we’ll definitely nominate for the Cox Plate.
“But I think a race like the Myer is the sort of race she could be peaking in at the end of her campaign. (That will) really suit her quite well I think.”
Contesting an impressive total of four wins and six minor places from just 12 competitive starts so far, Norzita quickly rose to the task over her maiden racing campaign; building in form on her way to second in the Group 2 Tea Rose Stakes (1500m) and winning the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) in October.
Returning in 2013 in typically scintillating form, the Thorn Park mare was unlucky to be blocked for a run and third in the Group 1 Coolmore Classic (1500m) before securing a second Group 1 victory when charging home to claim the Vinery Stud Stakes (2000m) on April 6th.
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