The Oaks has drawn together group 1 winners from Victoria and New Zealand, as well Hiyaam, which won the Vinery Stud Stakes a fortnight ago, where Unforgotten was the runner-up.
“You look at it and there is so much different form coming together and although we are confident in our filly’s ability, it is hard to work out if this will be the one,” Waller said. “She certainly has group 1 ability. We don’t know whether that will be good enough to win this race because there are so many good fillies here.”
Unforgotten will grab Waller’s focus before Winx shoots for her 25th straight win in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes.
“She [Unforgotten] is one I have liked since the summer, when she won a few in a row, and this has been the target,” he said. “She has came through the Vinery very well, where Hiyaam beat us fair and square. We got back and really there was no way we could make up the ground the way the race was run.
“I think at 2400 metres she will have the ability to be closer and we are hoping there is a little more pressure in the race because being out of a Galileo mare, she is going to stay the trip strongly.
“The Kiwi fillies really make the race interesting because they have been over the distance in the Oaks over there.”
Bookmakers were impressed by Unforgotten’s win in the Phar Lap Stakes, a race Waller has taken out with Winx and Foxplay, before her game second in the Vinery Stud Stakes, and she has been at the top of Oaks betting for the past month.
Unforgotten is the $4 top pick from Hiyaam and Adrian Knox Stakes winner Luvaluva at $5.50, while Aloisia, which won the Thousand Guineas in the spring and was third in the Vinery, is a $6.50 chance.
New Zealand Oaks winner Savvy Coup is kept safe in betting at $7 with regular partner Chris Johnson making the trip across the Tasman to ride the Savabeel filly.
Trainer Michael Pitman has followed the path used by Bonneval, winning the Lowland Stakes and New Zealand Oaks with Savvy Coup, which arrived on Monday, before coming to Australia with a month between runs.
“It’s a tried-and-true recipe,” Pitman said. “We just hope we don’t let the side down.
“It’s possibly a week more than would have been ideal, but we would have had to squeeze one in before we left or race on Doncaster day and I decided not to run then because of the heat.” – Chris Roots, Sydney Morning Herald.