Assistant trainer Darren Beadman is confident that promising colt Sampeah can produce a big performance fresh when he returns to racing in the 2015 Champagne Classic at Doomben on Saturday.
Sampeah stamped himself as a horse to follow when he made his racing debut with a strong win at Rosehill Gardens on November 29 and he lost no admirers when he finished third after having little luck in running in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) at Caulfield on February 14.
The Exceed And Excel colt made his Group 1 debut in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 28 and he hit the line fairly in the final stages of the race to finish eighth behind Pride Of Dubai before he finished third in the Group 2 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on March 14.
Sampeah was set to make his return to racing in the Group 3 Ken Russell Memorial Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast on April 25, but he was scratched from the race due to a couple of niggling issues and was saved for the Group 2 Champagne Classic (1200m) this weekend.
Beadman told Sky Racing HQ that Sampeah had recovered from the minor issues that kept him out of the Ken Russell Memorial Classic and he revealed that the two-year-old had worked strongly alongside BTC Cup contender Knoydart this morning in what was his final serious hit-out before the 2015 Champagne Classic.
“He was supposed to run at the Gold Coast the other day and he just had a little bit of a setback,” Beadman said.
“He is over all of his little niggling problems, he worked with Knoydart and he held his own with the open class sprinter.
“He hasn’t had a run for a while, but he is not an overly big horse and he is quiet clean-winded.
“That galloper this morning just tuned him up nicely for the event.
“He has probably appreciated a little bit of a freshen-up and he is in good spirits.”
The 2015 Champagne Classic field will be released tomorrow and the likes of Ken Russell Memorial Classic Big Tree, Chris Waller-trained Blueberry Hill, Golden Slipper scratching Look To The Stars, Liam Birchely-trained Pepperano, Gai Waterhouse-trained Sempre Libera, consistent juvenile Single Gaze and Chris Munce-trained Wicked Intent are all set to be included in the acceptances for the Group 2 event