Queensland’s leading trainers are gearing up for a Melbourne assault with a number of top horses set to chase glory during Australia’s premier racing period.
Robert Heathcote, Tony Gollan and Kelso Wood will all saddle up runners in Melbourne and all have genuine Group 1 chances.
Queensland’s premier trainer Heathcote will send a three-pronged spring brigade, headed by star sprinter Buffering, to Melbourne next week and is excited about the opportunity to showcase the quality that comes from the sunshine state.
“Hopefully we can go down there and show these blokes down south that we have some top quality horses up here,” Heathcote said.
“Tony’s got two good sprinters and obviously Kelso’s got Sizzling. If they can win some races and Buffering can go down there and win and Solzhenitsyn as well.
“It’d be great for Queensland racing to really show them what we’re about.”
While Buffering will be targeted at the big sprints later on in the carnival, first-time Melbourne visitor Solzhenitsyn will kick off his campaign in Sunday week’s Group 1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) with Heathcote’s other traveller Excellantes to run in the Group 2 Gilgai Stakes (1200m) the following weekend.
Challenging Buffering in both the Group 1 Manikato Stakes and Patinack Farm Classic will be Gollan’s Group 1 winner Temple Of Boom who could also be joined in the top grade by brother and stablemate Spirit Of Boom.
Spirit Of Boom kicked off his spring campaign with a narrow runner-up finish in the Group 3 Bobbie Lewis and will have a Sydney detour this weekend when he contests the Group 2 Shorts (1200m) at Randwick.
Sizzling, the star two-year-old of the Brisbane winter carnival, is making his first interstate trip and will be aimed at the Group 1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) on November 3.
Wood said earlier this month he believed the son of Snitzel has made a strong transition from two to three and will begin his spring journey in the $250,000 Blue Sapphire (1200m) at Caulfield on October 13.