Smart Missile trailed against Black Caviar this morning in a move that some may find strange given he only raced last Saturday.
Trainer Anthony Cummings though says it was something that was necessary for both horse and new rider Corey Brown.
Smart Missile was only ridden for the first 400m before being eased down at Caulfield, just enough for Brown to get a feel for how the horse behaves.
“He was only just there to jump out and go along and we eased him,” Cummings said.
“He virtually only had a barrier trial on Saturday, Corey goes on it on Saturday and I think he needs to work out what the horse can do form the barrier.”
By that Cummings wants to dispel any myth that the horse lacks early speed and he really wants to make the point that he can take up a position if required.
“There’s been a lot of talk about the horse being slow out of the barrier and that’s crap,” he said.
“Corey went along with the routine we suggested be used on Saturday but wasn’t.”
Smart Missile was ridden from the outside gate by Brett Preble in the Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes on Saturday and he settled last in the 17 horse field.
Despite flying home across the final 400m the start was always going to be too big to make up and Cummings was quietly fuming about the tactics which were used.
“It’s not to say we won’t ride him quiet on Saturday but I wanted to have Corey confident in what he can do,” he said.
Smart Missile will run in the Caulfield Guineas at his next start and with the addition of winkers for the first time you can all but guarantee he won’t be coming from the tail again.
“If he’d got clear running to the line (last start) I think he would of been right in the finish,” Cummings said.
“I think he (Preble) underestimated the horse and I think had he given him clear running to the line he would’ve been in the finish even as far back as he was which was pretty disappointing.”