Current Jumper of the Year, Bashboy, will take his place in the $100,000 Thackeray Steeplechase at Warrnambool racecourse next Sunday.
Trainer Ciaron Maher was spurred on by the nine-year-old’s last start 12 length win in the $100,000 Mosstrooper Steeplechase at Bendigo on June 16.
Bashboy’s last excursion to Warrnambool resulted in 20.5 length win in a 30,000 Handicap in July last year.
The Perugino gelding has never been beaten in his four outings at Warrnambool and will be looking to continue that flawless record in the Thackeray Steeplechase next weekend.
Bashboy’s main aim this season will be the $200,000 Grand National Steeplechase at Sandown Racecourse on July 14.
“I schooled him around the hill the other day to get his qualification to run at Warrnambool this season and Steve (Pateman) said he handled the track no worries,” Maher said.
“He pulled up great after Sunday and having a race every two weeks until the National is a really nice program for him.”
Maher believes that Bashboy has continued to improve over the past few months and will be at his career best in both the Thackeray Steeplechase and the Grand National next month.
“Steve (Pateman) said after schooling him this year that he has been just that bit sharper with his jumping and it looked that way on Sunday,” he said.
“I think he’s just as effective on top of the ground. He just goes very similar when the track’s heavy and that brings a lot of other horses undone.”
Bashboy has won 10 of his 37 race starts in total and has earned more than $400,000 in prize money during his horse racing career.
The Caulfield-based galloper is capable of both jumps and flat racing, however, has only ever been beaten in one of his six starts over the jumps.