Pierro unmasked and dangerous

Resuming … Gai Waterhouse colt Pierro prepares for a barrier trial at Warwick Farm last month.
Resuming … Gai Waterhouse colt Pierro prepares for a barrier trial at Warwick Farm last month.

PIERRO is back to his squealing best in preparation for his return in the Hobartville Stakes on Saturday as Gai Waterhouse maps out his future on and off the track.

The Lonhro colt, unbeaten in Sydney, will not have the blinkers on for his autumn return. Waterhouse said the decision not to use the device - known as the rogue's hood in Europe - at Rosehill for two reasons.

"He is a much more mature horse and might not need them," Waterhouse said. "I always have the option of putting them back on him. He is going to eventually go to stud and there can be a knock on a horse if he wears blinkers in Europe. He is an outstanding horse and I'm sure he can be just as impressive without them."

Pierro's autumn campaign starts almost a year to the day since winning the Silver Slipper, a preparation that netted the triple crown, including the Golden Slipper.

It makes him a sought-after stallion prospect - but owner Greg Kolivos wants to enjoy his racing career before worrying about sealing his future at stud.

Fellow three-year-old All Too Hard, which will start a long odds-on favourite in Saturday's Australian Guineas, has already been syndicated for more than $20 million, showing what is on offer beyond the racetrack.

"The Slipper is the race you want to win to be a stallion in Australia and he did that and then became the only colt in 30 years to win the triple crown," Waterhouse said. "It shows how exceptional he is.

"It is something [a stud deal] we have to be aware of going forward and it makes us think about where we will go with him.

"This race will tell us a lot about what program we will take against a very good year of three-year-olds. It is going to be exciting to see these horses all meet … we know Pierro is up with the very best of them."

Waterhouse has timed Pierro's return to have him at his peak for a possible clash with All Too Hard in the Randwick Guineas at Warwick Farm in a fortnight and would like to stretch him to 2000m this campaign. She has been delighted with reports from his track rider this week.

"He says he knows when [Pierro] is ready to go to the races because he starts squealing," she said. "This week as he has gone on and off the track he has been squealing. His regular rider just said to me, 'He's ready.'"

Proisir will also resume in the Hobartville after running mid-field in the Cox Plate, where Pierro was third to Ocean Park.

"Both owners were happy to go to this race and, as I said, it will decide a lot about where they go from here," Waterhouse said. "They are two lovely horses at the moment. Pierro is probably a bit ahead of Proisir on what they have done on the track.

"One is a $30 million horse, the other is worth $2 million, but they are both up to winning group 1s.

''Proisir got beaten in the Spring Champion and Cox Plate, but that will mean he will probably get less weight in the Doncaster, where Pierro would be well up in the weights. They are both going to race well on Saturday and then we will sit down to decide the right program for both of them."

This story Pierro unmasked and dangerous first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.