Nick Olive's Single Gaze begins autumn campaign in CF Orr Stakes

Canberra trainer Nick Olive is hoping Single Gaze can start with a place, but says his stable star will be at her best when she gets to Sydney at the end of March.

Single Gaze will have her first run since her spring campaign that included second place in the Caulfield Cup and a run in the Melbourne Cup.

She'll jump as a $31 chance in the group 1 CF Orr Stakes (1400 metres) at Caulfield on Saturday, with Tosen Stardom the $4.20 favourite.

It will be the five-year-old mare's first of three runs in Melbourne, along with the group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield in a fortnight and the group 1 Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington on March 10.

Then she'll head to Sydney for the Ranvet Stakes (2000m) and the $1.5 million BMW (2400m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 24 and 31 respectively.

That's when Olive was expecting Single Gaze to hit her straps, once she gets out to her preferred distance.


A crack at either the Sydney Cup (3200m) or the Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) could round out her autumn campaign.

"I reckon probably the BMW or the Ranvet [is when she'll be at her best], but she'll be well-and-truly going well going into the Australian Cup, she'll be going very well," he said.

"She definitely appreciates further [than 1400m]. She could run a good race fresh, but 1400m is definitely not her go."

But that doesn't mean he's not hoping for a good run in the CF Orr.

Olive said his gutsy mare had improved again since her run in the Melbourne Cup and was looking the best she had in a career that's earned $2 million in prizemoney.

Single Gaze has drawn barrier one and Olive said how she jumps from the barrier will decide where she finishes.

A good start that allowed jockey Kathy O'Hara to push forward will see her finish near the front, while if she drops back early then she'll finish back as well.

"I think she'll still run a good race. She's drawn [barrier] one, she just needs to be very positive to begin with," Olive said.

"If she can do that, she'll be a chance of running a really nice race. If she gets back in the field she'll finish back in the field.

"I think she's improved again this preparation so I'm hoping this will be the best preparation she's ever had."

Olive's been in Sydney the last couple of days looking at horse flesh ahead of the Inglis classic yearling sale, which starts on Saturday night.

He'll dash down to Melbourne for Single Gaze's run and then return to Sydney Saturday night with his chequebook.

Olive felt the Orr was an open race following the scratching of previous favourite Black Heart Bart.

While Tosen Stardom's the new leader in the betting, Hartnell's also a $4.80 chance, while Shillelagh ($7), Mr Sneaky ($7.50), Brave Smash ($8) and Thronum ($9.50) were all single-figure chances.

"I think it's a pretty open race to be honest. Black Heart Bart's scratched now, he was one of the favourites," Olive said.

"I think there's probably eight or 10 chances in the race to be honest, it's a very open race.

"I'd love to run a place, or even top five would be fantastic."