Laser Hawk could contest the 2015 Doncaster Mile at Royal Randwick during The Championships after he returned to winning form in the 2015 Newcastle Newmarket Handicap at Broadmeadows this afternoon.
Laser Hawk did not have a great deal of luck in running and he was caught wide throughout, but he was still able to show an impressive turn-of-foot in the final stages of the race to run away from the rest of the field and score his first race win since he took out the 2012 edition of the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m).
The Artie Schiller gelding was having his first race start since he finished at the tail of the field in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) at Royal Randwick in October last year, but he was given three barrier trials in the lead-up by trainer Joe Pride, who was always hopeful that the six-year-old would have the class to win the Group 3 event first-up.
“I was just hoping that he would get a decent run and get a nice fitness run into him,” Pride said.
“He sat deep there, but he did have three trials and had plenty of work put into him.
“I am just happy to get an old horse like this back in the winner’s circle.
“With all respect to his opposition here they are mostly out of restricted grade and this old bloke is a Group 1 winner.
“It comes in pretty handy when you only have to give them four or five kilos.”
Laser Hawk has been included in the first acceptances for the Group 1 Doncaster Mile (1600m), Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m) and Group 1 Sydney Cup (3200m) that will be held during The Championships and Pride indicated that the Newcastle Newmarket Handicap winner would press on to one of the major events, but he would wait until he assesses how the six-year-old comes out of the run before making a final decision.
“Hopefully there is still some life left in him and today would indicate just that,” Pride said.
“This old bloke might be effective.
“He is in the Doncaster, he is in the Queen Elizabeth and we will just take him along and see how he pulls up from today.”
Jockey Hugh Bowman revealed after the race that he was keen to press forward on Laser Hawk in the early stages of the Newcastle Newmarket Handicap and he was surprised by how much early speed there was in the race.
The leading hoop said that he was happy to get Laser Hawk in a rhythm and he believes that the class of the six-year-old is what got him over the line at the end of the race.
“There is no substitute for class and we saw what this horse did as a three-year-old, he would have been a genuine weight-for-age horse as a four-year-old if he had stayed intact,” Bowman said.
“Obviously he had his issues, but he been with Joe for a while now and he has come here in a lovely race to start off.
“He did it the hard way, but he was all class.
“He has carried weight, he was stuck deep.”
Laser Hawk is currently available at 2015 Doncaster Mile odds of $51 with Ladbrokes, while he is available at a lengthy quote of $101 to take out the Queen Elizabeth Stakes.