He’s one of the most lightly raced three year olds in action during the spring but at the same time Smart Missile is one of the most impressive.
His three career starts to date have returned three victories, all in black type events and all in tremendous style.
None showed this better than his last race when he was seemingly nowhere with 200m to go before producing a blinding turn of foot many experts claim they haven’t seen in years.
It was enough to get him the win over Foxwedge in the Run To The Rose and also place him as the one to beat in this Saturday’s main event.
Like many in this weekend’s Golden Rose the small field of six probably isn’t ideal for his style of racing but unlike many he has effectively dealt with it before.
While his debut win in the Breeders Plate was against 12 runners, his Todman Stakes win was in a field of five and the Run To The Rose had just eight.
That leaves him with somewhat of an advantage over a few of his rivals, even if trainer Anthony Cummings doesn’t admit it.
“Small fields are often tricky affairs, it’d be nice to get a right draw whatever the hell that might be,” he said.
While many are also wary of a lack of pace in the race, Cummings says the leader is a clear pick.
“I think Helmet would lead almost certainly, I think and you can’t afford to be giving him too big a start,” he said.
The theory is backed up by the decision by the Peter Snowden stable to add blinkers for the first time this weekend.
“It is a game of millimetres so he’s played a positive move there and I think that speaks for itself as to where he’ll be in the run,” he said.
This will be the first time ever that Smart Missile has had two runs in a prep but Cummings is confident that’ll only serve to suit him better.
“The way he’s pulling up after the gallops he’s much cleaner in his wind,” he said.
Also of no concern are the track conditions despite the fact all of his starts to date have been rated dead at the very best.
“I think he’s had soft tracks pretty much all of his runs but given most of his work is on a dirt track and that’s a hard surface I don’t think there’s much difference,” he said.
The Golden Rose barrier draw has just been completed and the horses will jump from the following gates; Foxwedge (1) Flight Of Pegasus (2) Manawanui (3) Helmet (4) Smart Missile (5) Aeronautical (6).