TIP TOP GETS CHANCE IN VILLIERS STAKES

Lightly-raced six-year-old Tip Top is finally going to get a chance to reach his potential in next month’s Villiers Stakes.

Trainer Les Bridge has planned a preparation to get Tip Top to the Villiers starting with a benchmark 88 at Rosehill on Saturday.

Villiers path: Tip Top has overcome injury and is ready to fulfil his talent.
Villiers path: Tip Top has overcome injury and is ready to fulfil his talent.Credit:AAP

The gelding is lucky to have a racing career at all, after getting away at Randwick on the way to the pool as a three-year-old and injuring a tendon.

It led to 18 months away from the racetrack and had Bridge worried what sort of horse he would have when he finally returned.

“That was the main worry for me because we knew how talented he was.

“I was away at the sales in Melbourne when it happened and got it all second-hand but apparently he was away for a while and when they caught him he had the bad cut.

“I thought he was a group horse back then;  since he has come back nothing has changed with him.”

Tip Top had only run third in a Kembla Grange maiden as a three-year-old and has had 15 runs since the injury for five wins and five placings. Going to Rosehill he is looking to complete a hat-trick of victories.

After the worst run of his career, Bridge gave Tip Top a freshen up and he was a very good winner on the Kensington track midweek, before stepping back to Saturday grade.

He proved too good for Fierce Impact and Mandylion at his latest appearance seven weeks ago, prompting Bridge to freshen him for a crack at the Villiers.

It a race Bridge has won twice. Most recently with Utzon in 2006, which won the Festival Stakes on the way to the Christmas mile.