Former champion jockey and now rookie trainer Chris Munce has his sights set on the rich three year old sprints during the Spring Carnival for his stable star Wicked Intent.
Wicked Intent made a late start to the Brisbane Winter Carnival with a gutsy second to the Liam Birchley trained Blueberry Hill in the Group 2 $175,000 Bollinger Champagne Classic (1200m) at Doomben last Saturday.
Munce was ecstatic with the performance of his Wicked Style colt who had his first Winter appearance delayed when he had to be scratched two weeks earlier from the Group 3 $125,000 Moreton Hire Ken Russell Memorial Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast after he twisted a plate and damaged his hoof.
“I was so excited as I knew everything that had gone into getting my horse to the race,” Munce told The Courier-Mail.
“Last Thursday, I was thinking of scratching him because I still didn’t think he was right.
“He was in a lot of pain when he had part of his hoof pulled away. Given what he has gone through, I would have been delighted had he finished in the top six.’’
A missed run at the Gold Coast and a wide alley combined to deny Wicked Intent a first up win but Munce knows that there is plenty of improvement heading in to the Group 2 $250,000 Mitavite Australia BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1350m) at Doomben on May 23.
Munce is yet to confirm if he will push onto the Group 1 $600,000 BMW Australia J.J. Atkins (1600m) at Doomben on June 6 after the BRC Sires’ Produce Stakes but is already talking Spring Carnival time.
“I have got a dream … I’d love to take him travelling in the spring,’’ Munce says.
“I want to see him run well and be strong in the Sires before deciding whether to push onto the JJ (Group 1 JJ Atkins).
“Regardless, I would love to travel him to Sydney or Melbourne after he has had a decent break. I think he deserves a crack at a really good race.’’
Wicked Intent was one of the stars of the early two year old season and won his first race start in October over 900m at the Gold Coast before being tipped out for a break.
On his return in the Summer the flashy chestnut was impressive with two Doomben wins before suffering his first defeat when second to Mishani Honcho in the Group 3 $150,000 B.J. McLachlan Stakes (1200m) at the Gold Coast on December 27.
He then ran sixth to Le Chef in the $2m Jeep Magic Millions 2yo Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast on January 10 and was one of Munce’s mounts on his last day of riding before he hung up his saddle.