He’s a horse that’s done so much throughout his career at the top level but any hope of one last win for Sniper’s Bullet has all but faded after a disastrous Winter Carnival.
He never looked a chance in any of this three starts and not once did he so much as break into the top half of the field.
Trainer Tracey Bartley has copped a heap of criticism for continuing with the horse with many people calling for a spell and a heap more saying the horse should be retired altogether.
Bartley has elected to persist though and while he says 2011 will be his last year, he feels he can get one more run out of him this prep before one last campaign at the end of the year.
This Saturday he runs at Rosehill in the Listed Civic Stakes, a quality event over 1400m.
Bartley is hoping the drop in grade can spark him back to life and insists the horse still appears in good shape.
“I couldn’t find anything wrong, all’s well and he’s happy,” he said.
“He worked terrific this morning working with another they clocked really good times.”
Throughout his career Snipers Bullet has been a get back horse and he’s scored plenty of wins from running home from the tail of the field.
There’s no doubt that kick just isn’t there these days so Bartley will sit him a little bit closer this weekend.
” Hopefully he can draw a decent alley and punch up on them and hold his ground,” he said.
Barriers are an issue which he blames for a lot of his failures up in Brisbane, he says he just hasn’t been able to find a good spot.
“I think out of all his runs he’s just drawn really awkward,” he said.
“Maybe the drop back in lower company might help him a bit and then he can go out and have a spell.”
He dismisses his critics who say the horse shouldn’t still be in work and maintains that at the first sign of any issue he’ll be doing what’s best for him.
“If I thought that the horse really wasn’t enjoying his work I’d turn him straight out,” he said.
As for this weekend not only will he need a barrier, luck in running and a bit of speed in the race, he’s still going to need a big form turn around.
One thing Bartley isn’t worried about is the 1400m, in fact he says the horse has developed and would have no issues with an even longer trip.
“He’ll want every part of that (1400m), I probably wish it was a mile,” he said.