Heathcote Hopeful Buffering Can Break Group 1 Drought In Moir Stakes

Trainer Robert Heathcote is hopeful that Buffering can finally win his maiden Group 1 race in the Moir Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on September 27.


Buffering will begin his 2013 Spring Racing Carnival campaign in the Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley on September 27. Photo by: Daniel Costello

Buffering looked as though he was on his way to an elusive Group 1 victory in the Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) at Eagle Farm in June, when he dashed clear with four hundred metres left to run, but he was caught in the final stages of the race by Linton who received a dream run up the inside rail.

The Mossman gelding was sent to the spelling paddock after the heartbreaking defeat and Heathcote has been happy with how the six-year-old came through the break.

“We are really happy with the horse,” Heathcote told Sky Racing HQ.

“After the Stradbroke we managed to give him five and a half weeks out and he has done really well.

“I’ve given myself plenty of time to get him ready to hopefully break that maiden Group 1 status that he currently has.”

Heathcote has selected the Moir Stakes as the ideal race for Buffering first-up, which gives him another opportunity to record a victory at the highest level of racing.

The recently upgraded race is set to draw a strong field but the leading Brisbane trainer is confident that Buffering’s exceptional first-up record will give him an edge over his rivals.

“He has got a fantastic first-up record, he has had eight first-up runs for seven wins, and his only defeat first-up was against Black Caviar and Hay List first-up in the Lightning a few years ago,” Heathcote said.

“We are targeting the Moir Stakes, he won it last year when it was a Group 2 and it is now a Group 1.

“I will use the same method that I used for Buffering when he started his successful winter carnival up here and that is to give him a couple of trials so he goes into the race spot on.

“I know that it won’t be an easy assignment, he is going to come up against the likes of Bel Sprinter and Epaulette, and he will need to be at the top of his game but he will certainly be there running a mighty race.”

Buffering will have an official barrier trial in Brisbane on next month and Heathcote plans on giving him another jump-out as well as some exhibition gallops in the lead-up to the Moir Stakes.

About The Author

Thomas Hackett

Thomas is a passionate and opinionated racing journalist and punter who has been obsessed with horse racing since he backed Saintly to win the 1996 Melbourne Cup. An international racing enthusiast, he has his finger on the pulse of racing news not just from Australia but all around the world.

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