Buffering is taking winning form into the 2013 VRC Sprint Classic and trainer Robert Heathcote is confident that the gusty gelding can score his second straight victory in the Group 1 event at Flemington on Saturday.
Buffering finally broke through for his maiden win at Group 1 level in the Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley two weeks ago and Heathcote told Racing Ahead that the Mossman gelding had come out of the brave victory in excellent condition; with the decision to space the sprinter’s runs this preparation really paying dividends.
“He has done super and we are really happy with him,” Heathcote said.
“It is something that I labored over, the programming of the horse, and giving him the month between the Moir into the Manikato was the best thing that we have done because he has really thrived since then.
“We are going up the straight tomorrow in the best condition that we can have our horse.”
A number of horses will be backing up from the Manikato Stakes in the VRC Sprint Classic field this weekend but Heathcote believes that he race formerly known as the Patinack Farm Classic has drawn an even stronger group of horses.
Leading Hong Kong sprinter Lucky Nine was almost able to resign Buffering to another second place finish at Group 1 level in the Manikato Stakes and Heathcote rates the five-time Group 1 winner the biggest danger to his star sprinter.
“It is an absolutely cracking race with a super field that is packed full of quality,” Heathcote said.
“There are plenty of chances and Lucky Nine is the world’s highest rated sprinter so he is certainly going to be the testing material for us.
“I like the fact that Buffering has proven to be successful up the straight because it is a daunting task.
“He is a bulldog and a great weight-carrier, so with 200 metres to go they will know that they have something to catch.
“I am confident that he will race well because he very rarely ever runs less than a competitive race.
“It is a tough race but he will be thereabouts.”
Buffering will join You Remember (1995), Scamanda (1976) and Vain (1969) as the only horses to have won the Manikato Stakes and the VRC Sprint Classic in the same year if he is successful at Flemington tomorrow.