Bel Sprinter was unable to carry a race-high weight to success when ninth in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) first-up on February 28th, but is reportedly in peak condition ahead of Friday’s featured Group 1 William Reid Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley.
A Group 1 winner having taken out the 2013 edition of The Galaxy (1100m), Bel Sprinter jumped from the gates well in the Oakleigh Plate but was unlucky to be checked early and was unable to recover over the race’s late stages.
Having also been included in nominations for the Listed Hareeba Stakes (1200m) at Mornington on Saturday, trainer Jason Warren has been thrilled with the form and condition displayed by the Bel Esprit gelding in recent weeks and is confident the conditions of the William Reid Stakes will be ideal for the seven-year-old.
“He is in terrific order,” Warren told RSN.
“He was a little bit disappointing first-up in the Oakleigh Plate, but in saying that he got bad in an oddly run race and his closing sectionals were really good.
“We are still upbeat about the way that he is going and I am looking forward to running him either Friday or Saturday.
“You wouldn’t think that he is the age that he is because he is bouncing around and very happy.
“We popped him over a couple of jumps yesterday and he is full of himself.
“He is a sound horse and there is no reason to slow down at this stage.”
Undoubtedly hitting career-best form over the 2014 autumn, Bel Sprinter followed up his impressive Galaxy win with a credible third behind equine superstar Black Caviar in the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) before placing a close second to Lucky Nine in the Group 1 International Sprint (1200m) in Singapore.
Returning for a dead-heat victory alongside Miracles Of Life in the Group 2 Caulfield Sprint (1100m) on October 18th, Bel Sprinter returned to the paddock after mustering mid-pack finishes in the Group 2 Salinger Stakes (1200m) and Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m).
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