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All Too Hard v Pierro in The Run to the Rose a clash to savour
28th Aug 2012
The Daily Telegraph - Ray Thomas - Tuesday, 28 August 2012
THE first clash between the super-colts was so newsworthy it made the front page on race eve.
And the return bout between Pierro and All Too Hard (pictured) is again capturing the imagination of the racing public, as their showdown in the Group 3 $125,000 The Run to the Rose (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday looms.
Pierro trumped All Too Hard in their first meeting in April, when he claimed the ATC Sires Produce Stakes, and he is expected to line up as favourite when they clash again in the Run to the Rose.
Unbeaten in six starts last season, Golden Slipper winner Pierro is making his three-year-old debut, while All Too Hard has already had a new-season comeback, finishing third behind Snitzerland in the San Domenico Stakes two weeks ago.
They are among nine nominations for Saturday's race, which also includes Black Opal Stakes winner Epaulette, John O'Shea's Group 3 winner Ashokan and stablemates Ninth Legion and Your Song.
The Gerald Ryan-trained Amorino and Pierro's stablemate Kabayan are also entered, but they are expected to instead run in the McNeil Stakes.
Hall of Fame trainer John Hawkes is keeping his options open with All Too Hard, nominating his three-year-old for two races at Caulfield, the McNeil Stakes and the weight-for-age Memsie Stakes.
This is usual practice for the Hawkes stable, as they weigh up likely opposition and track conditions to determine the most suitable races for their gallopers.
All Too Hard is early favourite for the Group 1 $1 million Golden Rose (1400m) at Rosehill next month, and in all likelihood he will contest the Run to the Rose against Pierro.
Gai Waterhouse, trainer of Pierro, has confirmed her champion colt will resume on Saturday, but remains non-committal about a Golden Rose start.