Triple Group 1 winner Buffering has received chiropractic treatment on his head, following his defeat in the BTC Cup on Saturday, but remains on track to contest the 2014 Doomben 10,000 in Brisbane next weekend.
Buffering started the 2014 BTC Cup as an odds-on favourite, but failed to show his usual speed in the early stages of the race before battling home bravely to finish third behind Famous Seamus and the fast-finishing Spirit Of Boom.
Trainer Robert Heathcote told Racing Ahead this morning that he was disappointed with the performance of Buffering in the BTC Cup, but revealed that the Mossman gelding was found to be suffering from a head issue yesterday, which may be the reason for his out of character performance in the Group 1 event last Saturday.
“He trotted up sound and there was no lameness issues, but when the vet got to his head and his poll he was really quiet disturbed by it,” Heathcote said.
“The horse was in a lot of discomfort and he basically had to carry out some chiropractic manipulation to pop his poll back in.
“He showed immediate relief and the rider this morning said that he felt as good as he ever has.
“Whether or not that is an excuse, I won’t know until the Doomben 10,000.
“It is also possible that from the T.J. Smith, that run on a heavy track, it may have flattened him and knocked him about.
“It is possible that he is looking for a little bit further at this stage of his career.”
Heathcote confirmed yesterday that Buffering would continue his 2014 Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival campaign and he will have the opportunity to score his maiden Group 1 win in his home state in the Doomben 10,000 (1350m) on May 24.
Buffering will be having the fourth start of his autumn preparation in the Doomben 10,000, after running in both the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Royal Randwick on March 15 and the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) during the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival, and Heathcote said that he is happy with the fitness levels of the six-year-old.
“He is fit and I will just concentrate on his mental attitude at this stage and he won’t do a lot,” Heathcote said.
“He will have a little hit-out on Saturday and we will maybe top him off on Tuesday and that will be it.”
Buffering ($3.80) remains a narrow favourite in the 2014 Doomben 10,000 betting market at Ladbrokes Australia from Rebel Dane ($4), Spirit Of Boom ($5.50) and Famous Seamus ($9).