Trainer Tony Pike has revealed that he is confident that Sacred Star will be passed fit to contest the 2015 Doomben 10,000 in Brisbane next Saturday.
Sacred Star was set to return to Australian racing in the Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben last weekend, but Pike was forced to scratch the Group 1 winning sprinter after he was found lame just hours before the race on Saturday afternoon.
Pike said that Sacred Star had shown all the symptoms of suffering from a stone bruise, but he told Sky Racing HQ that the Flying Spur gelding had all but recovered from the issue and would be able to restart preparations for the Group 1 Doomben 10,000 (1350m) by the end of the week.
“It is the first time that it has happened to me,” Pike said.
“We worked him in the morning and he was 100 percent good as goal and he went to walk out of the box to head over to the course on Saturday and unfortunately he walked out lame.
“It looks like a stone bruise and we have almost got on top of it now and he is 95 percent sound this morning when he went for a trot and canter around the dirt at Eagle Farm.
“I’d say by the end of the week we should be able to start galloping him.
“I am planning to either gallop him Thursday or Friday this week and then have a good solid hit out at Doomben on Tuesday.
“That is the plan at this stage and we are fairly confident that we are going to be able to get there.
“We are pretty confident that we have got him back on track.
“He will head down to the beach at Hendra for the next couple of days and all going well he will gallop by the end of the week.”
Sacred Star returned to his Australian racing when he took out the Group 2 QTC Cup (1300m) at Eagle Farm on May 31 last year and he was far from disgraced when he finished a gallant fifth in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1400m) a week later.
The five-year-old was unable to return to winning form in the spring, but he stamped himself as the leading sprinter in Australia with back-to-back wins in the Group 1 Telegraph Handicap (1200m) at Trentham on January 17 and the Group 1 NRM Sprint (1400m) at Te Rapa on February 7.
Sacred Star is currently available at Doomben 10,000 odds of $12 with Ladbrokes, while Srikandi ($7.50) remains a narrow favourite from Lucky Hussler ($8), Our Boy Malachi ($8.50), Generalife ($9.50) and Knoydart ($10).