Pat Hyland bemused by odds for in-form mare

When Pat Hyland arrived in Sydney earlier this week he was elated with the condition of his mare Bonaria, who will tackle the $600,000 group 1 Coolmore Classic at Rosehill on Saturday, but the trainer was bemused at how interstate markets had rated the five-year-old.

Bonaria arrives in Sydney with a more than compelling form line to be competitive in one of Sydney's most important female group 1 events.

Hyland admits that Bonaria is tackling arguably her hardest mission at Rosehill, but believes the mare ranks as one of Victoria's most in-form gallopers and deserves her chance in the 1500-metre event.

"Her form lines are very strong, so strong that you've got to rate her up there in a race like the Coolmore. Bookmakers rate her at $13, but she's got form around horses like A Time For Julia, who has been more than competitive in Sydney," he said.

"You really can't fault [Bonaria's] form, having won her last two in Melbourne. I suppose it might be the Melbourne horse coming into Sydney and for that reason is not that well respected."

Hyland, a former top jockey, recalled that he went to Sydney in 1969 and took the state's most important event, the Golden Slipper, when he steered Vain to an effortless win.

"Vain is a classic example. An outsider from Sydney racing and bookmakers bet as much as 8-1. But you often see it in reverse in Melbourne, with horses away from Victoria downgraded by the locals," he said.

Hyland pointed out that the booking of Tim Clark for Bonaria came after the original weights for the Coolmore Classic had his mare on 53 kilograms.

Jockey Michael Rodd, who's had a close and successful partnership with Bonaria, was ruled out because of his inability to get down to such a light weight.

"When we saw the weights, it was clear that Michael couldn't make 53 kilos, so I went through the Sydney jockey's list and engaged Tim Clark,'' Hyland said.

"But soon after the booking was made the top weight for the race was scratched and all the weights were raised and now Bonaria has 54 and a half kilos, which could have seen Michael ride the mare.

"But I'm more than happy with Tim's booking and it's just unfortunate the way things fell for Michael."

Apart from A Time For Julia, Bonaria is one of the key Victorian starters in the Coolmore Classic.

Chris Waller, who has three runners in the race including the favourite Catkins, is in the prime position. His other runners are Royal Descent and Arinosa.

in the Ranvet Stakes, And corporate bookmakers are suggesting that New Zealand-trained It's A Dundeel, who has drifted this week in betting, will get strong support.

Melbourne Cup and Australian Cup winner Fiorente is the $2.50 favourite to win the $500,000 weight-for-age event.

Betstar's Alan Eskander said on Friday: "Fiorente has been strong in the market this week, but I expect both the favourites to draw much closer come race time. It's A Dundeel is certain to improve from it's first-up run and he should be nearing his peak.

"But, whichever way it goes, it should be an exciting race."

This story Pat Hyland bemused by odds for in-form mare first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.