Courtesy of SMH.com.au

Escholido, an acceptor in Saturday’s Centennial Park Handicap at Royal Randwick, promises at some stage to continue the flow of European winners for Chris Waller, prompting the question of whether he is better value with imports than Gai Waterhouse.

Of course, the Waterhouse stayers in the category hail from New Zealand. “Gai also has her husband Rob go through all the form in NZ and identify stayers they wish to buy. They don’t buy them through the tried horse sales like Waller does, and she pays a hell of a lot more her horses,” emailed “Gamblor” on Racenet. “When you are paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for imports you would want to be purchasing those types of horses.” Rob (not Waterhouse) countered: “Gai’s imports would be far better! Descarado won a Caulfield Cup, Tullamore won Brisbane Cup and Herculian Prince won a Metrop. The list goes on.”

Waller followed the Irish-bred Wazn at Rosehill last Saturday with Titbit, another winner at Randwick on Wednesday. Certainly he hasn’t outlaid the same amounts as Waterhouse in New Zealand, and appears to be seeking more bread-and-butter stayers that will give owners a steady return with merely the possibility, rather than aim, of group triumphs.

 
No other trainer operating in Australia has had the same strike rate with the usually-difficult-to-acclimatise Europeans as Waller.

Another poser is whether an owner is better off with a Waller European or a more expensive two-year-old with little but appearance and bloodlines to recommend them.