Robert Heathcote is refusing to let a less than ideal barrier draw detract from his chances going into the Stradbroke Handicap this weekend.
Heathcote has two horses in the race with Woorim the punters pick over the seemingly fading Buffering.
Woorim came to the attention of many after coming from nowhere in the BRC Sprint to show a scintillating turn of foot in the final 200m and win the event.
He’s a horse that likes to get back early and run home late but Heathcote is wary not to give the leaders too big a start, especially with a field of 18.
Unfortunately Woorim will have little choice after claiming gate 18, he’ll jump from 15 if the emergencies aren’t included.
The story was a bit better for Buffering which has gate 10 but mostly gate 8 when the emergencies are taken out.
Heathcote isn’t overly concerned after the draw and is still quite hopefully of claiming the million dollar Group 1.
“It’s not a major disadvantage, but it is a disadvantage,” he said.
“Barrier 18 will mean he’ll get back probably 3 or 4 horses more than I would have hoped.”
He says Woorim is in great shape and at the peak of his form this prep.
“I’m really happy with him I was really happy when he won the BRC Sprint so we could go right into the Stradbroke,” he said.
Like many though he’ll be keeping a close eye on the weather over the next few days.
“I just hope the track is dry enough for him,” he said.
“He’s a genuine Group 1 horse I have no doubts about that.”
Heathcote is also refusing to dismiss Buffering as a chance even after his dreadful run last start coming home last in the Doomben 10,000.
“I certainly haven’t ruled out Buffering,” he said.
“Buffering from barrier 10 probably isn’t such a bad draw.”
Current markets see Woorim listed on the third line of betting with Buffering well back around 40 to 1.