Oakleigh Plate winner Woorim will line up in Saturday’s Group 1 $400,000 Smirnoff BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben alongside speedy stable mate Buffering.
Brisbane’s premier trainer Robert Heathcote confirmed the BTC Cup start after Woorim was too strong for Buffering at the end of a smart 600m gallop on the course proper at Doomben this morning.
“Woorim will run on Saturday after that work,” Heathcote said after the Group 1 winner had half a length over Buffering on the line.
Both horses worked strongly and will be ready for their Group 1 assignment on Saturday.
“The work will top Buffering off nicely. And I gave Woorim a good hit-out on Saturday and I was happy with what I saw.”
Woorim provided Heathcote with his first Group 1 victory when came from last at the 400m to swamp the leaders in taking out the $400,000 Sportingbet Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 25 but has struggled at Group 1 level at his last three starts.
Heathcote was forced to quit Woorim’s Sydney Autumn campaign after he failed to beat a runner home behind the Chris Waller trained Metal Bender in the $400,000 Daily Telegraph George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill on April 7 when it was discovered that the six year old had picked up a virus.
“He picked up a bug in Sydney and he had ten days off to recover,” Heathcote said.
With Buffering likely to set up a hot pace, Heathcote said the Woorim will appreciate the fast tempo and that will give him every chance to run down his stable mate.
“With Buffering in the race on Saturday and a few others probably wanting to go with him the speed will be on and that will obviously suit Woorim,” he said.
“You saw what he did in the Oakleigh Plate. Running 9.8 seconds for his last furlong to beat a top field of sprinters was extraordinary.”
Buffering is currently the short priced favourite at $2.40 ahead of the Group 1 Galaxy winner Temple Of Boom at $7.50 while Woorim is well down the betting at $15.
Damian Browne has retained the ride on Woorim while top Sydney jockey Nash Rawiller has been confirmed the new jockey for Buffering taking over form Jim Byrne who partnered the four year old in his seven length win over Scenic Blast in the $100,000 WFA Coca-Cola Amatil (1200m) at Eagle Farm on May 2.
Rawiller is coming off a memorable Sydney Autumn Carnival where he combined with Gai Waterhouse to rack up an outstanding seven Group 1 wins.
The pair combined to win the two year old Triple Crown with Pierro, and took out the Queen Of The Turf, Doncaster Mile and the Queen Elizabeth Stakes with More Joyous and the Rosehill Guineas with Laser Hawk.
Rawiller also took out the William Reid on Foxwedge at Moonee Valley in March as well as the Futurity at Caulfield in February on King Mufhasa.