La Mexicana

La Mexicana (Image: Racing Photos)

Mexicana's Manikato 'throw at the stumps'

Sam Freedman concedes the Group 1 Manikato Stakes is a 'throw at the stumps' for La Mexicana and, as a talented cricketer himself, the young co-trainer knows that you can still hit them from deep square leg with only one to aim at.

La Mexicana, who Freedman trains in partnership with his father Anthony, is a $20 chance with Sportsbet as she steps up to the elite level for just the second time, searching for her first win since April.

"We're quite realistic that, whilst it's probably a step down on some of the better weight-for-age spring races, they probably still have the wood on her," Freedman said.

"She's going there in good form, she looks terrific, she's working well, not sure she's a winning chance but she's there to hopefully at least sneak into a place to help her pedigree.

"She handles The Valley and she likes Soft tracks so, if the rain did come, that would help bring them back to her level but the gate (barrier 10) has probably made it even more difficult."

La Mexicana started her campaign with the stable eyeing the likes of the G1 Memsie and Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes, before quickly realising that level was a bridge too far.

She's had four runs this preparation for two seconds, a third and a fourth but has finished a combined 2.1 lengths off winning all four.

"She's a very consistent mare and she'll win more races, but this is probably a bit of a throw at the stumps and hope that she can get that Group 1 black type on her page," Freedman said.

"She's going from fillies' to mares' grade now, so it's always going to get a bit harder."