Rising eight year old Smokin’ Joey is being prepared for another Spring Carnival campaign and is likely to resume in the Group 1 $400,000 New Zealand Bloodstock Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 29.
Smokin’ Joey is back in work with trainer Wez Hunter after having a short break in the Sunshine State following a two run Queensland Winter Carnival campaign.
The seven year old ran an honest race when eighth to Srikandi in the Group 1 $2m AAMI Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) at Doomben on June 6 then scored a narrow but convincing win in the Listed $175,000 City Of Ipswich Eye Liner Stakes (1350m) at Ipswich on June 13
“He’s been back in work a week and I’m leaning towards running him in the Memsie Stakes (1400m) first-up,” Hunter told racing.com.
“He’s got that residual fitness and fresh legs so we’ll start him off there and then reassess things.”
Smokin’ Joey is a winner over 1600m and hasn’t raced beyond 1800m but Hunter is contemplating stepping him up to a middle distance during the Spring.
“The owner is really keen to try him over a bit further this time around. He’s a brother to Our Smoking Joe who won a Queen Elizabeth (2500m).”
Smokin’ Joey made up ground from the back when fourth to Moriarty in 2014 Group 1 $500,000 TAB Touch – Kingston Town Classic over 1800m at Ascot in Perth while his win over 1600m was during the 2015 Melbourne Autumn Carnival when he beat Jacquinot Bay in the Group 3 $150,000 T S Carlyon Cup (1600m) at Caulfield on February 14.
Smokin’ Joey has been a regular Group 1 performer since his two year old days and made it to the Group 1 winner’s circle with a victory in the 2014 $500,000 The Tapestry Wines Goodwood (1200m) at Morphettville.
He also has two Group 1 minor placings to his credit with a head second to Boban in the $1m Emirates Stakes (1600m) at Flemington during the 2013 Melbourne Spring Carnival and a second to Suavito in the $400,000 Futurity Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield during this year’s Melbourne Autumn Carnival.
Smokin’ Joey is just shy of earning $1.4 million in prizemoney for connections from eight wins, seven seconds and a third from fifty-two career starts.