Light spring to benefit Chapada at Sandown

Craig Brennan
Trainer Mike Moroney will saddle up Chapada in the Group Two Zipping Classic at Sandown

Mindful of the tough season Chapada had during his three-year-old year, trainer Mike Moroney is happy he decided on a light spring campaign.

That brief preparation will wind up at Sandown on Saturday when Chapada runs in the Group Two Zipping Classic (2400m).

Chapada ran in three Derbys last season, finishing an unlucky third to Extra Brut in the Victoria Derby, 10th in the Australian Derby at Randwick and fourth in the South Australian Derby.

"We are well aware that some struggle if they have had a hard season making that transition between three and four," Moroney said.

"So we are quite happy to make this the last run of his campaign and go to the paddock again and look towards the autumn and the winter."

Moroney said Chapada arguably should have won the Victoria Derby and the Rosehill Guineas on his way to the Australian Derby.

He said by the time Chapada raced in the South Australian Derby he was a tired horse.

"That's why we made the decision to give him a long break and not concentrate on too many runs in the spring," Moroney said.

"He's a gelding. We decided not to sell him to Hong Kong so now we have to prove the decision we made was the right one."

Chapada will be lining up for the fourth run of his campaign on Saturday.

He resumed at Caulfield in September, finished third in the Seymour Cup on October 20 before a last-start sixth in the Rosehill Cup (2000m) on November 2.

"We wanted to get him up to a mile-and-a-half if we thought he was starting to work and race like he was getting dour," Moroney said.

"He has shown us that, so we're happy to step him up to the mile-and-a-half again and see how he goes as that will gives us a line on what we do in the autumn."

Stablemate Sound, who finished 10th in the Caulfield Cup and 12th in the Melbourne Cup, collecting $280,000 prize money, is set to run in the Sandown Cup (3200m).

Moroney said the stayer would have a break after Saturday's race and possibly head to the Auckland Cup in New Zealand before returning to Sydney for the autumn.

Nominations for the Zipping Classic, which attracted 13 entries, Sandown Guineas (11) and Sandown Stakes (14) have been held open until 10am on Tuesday.