Premiership winning trainer Peter Moody is confident that his two year old Bassett will handle the step up to 1600m in the Group 1 $600,000 BMW Australia J.J. Atkins at Doomben on Saturday.
Bassett comes to Brisbane for the premier Winter Carnival juvenile event with only one race start under his belt with a win over 1100m in a two year old plate at Caulfield on May 16.
Moody is backing his judgement that the Savabeel youngster will have no problem handling the steep rise in distance and said that this race had been on the agenda for a long time.
“He’s by Savabeel, so I don’t see it that way,” Moody told The Courirer-Mail.
“This race has always been on the radar. That’s why we nominated him for it.
“The trick was trying to work out the right preparation to get him there.”
Moody had contemplated running Bassett in the Group 2 $250,000 Mitavite Australia BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m) at Doomben on May 23 but opted for the easier Caulfield race to make sure he would head to Brisbane with some qualifying prizemoney to help him get into the field.
“The temptation was to have his first start in the Sires at 1350m, but there was going to be the chance he wouldn’t make the field so we opted to kick him off at home,” Moody said.
“I think three weeks to a mile is achievable. Two-year-olds are a lot more athletic than older horses and they can adapt better.
“If anything, my concern is that he’s a bit bold (going). I’ve been working hard since that run getting him to relax.”
Moody is quite happy with the way Bassett has settled into his new surrounding in Brisbane and will give him his final serious workout on Tuesday morning.
“I must say that since he arrived in Brisbane, he settled in like a seasoned traveller.
“Provided he pleases me with his gallop (Tuesday), I will be paying up for him.”
Melbourne jockey Daniel Stackhouse was aboard Bassett for his debut win at Caulfield but Moody’s number one stable jockey Luke Nolen will take over the reins on Saturday.
Betting for the J.J. Atkins at Ladbrokes.com.au has Basset at the head of the market order at $5.50 slightly ahead of the Chris Waller trained Press Statement at $6.
Local filly Blueberry Hill shares the next line of betting with Waller’s other top fancy Counterattack at $6.50 with Clarry Conners Sires’ Produce Stakes winner Look To The Stars marked as a $8 chance.