Warren Thrilled with Bel Sprinter Ahead of 2015 Oakleigh Plate

February 27th, 2015

Having reportedly taken well to his return to work following a relatively successful spring campaign, trainer Jason Warren has revealed he is not fazed by Group 1 winner Bel Sprinter’s allocation of the outside barrier 18 for Saturday’s 2015 Oakleigh Plate (1100m).

Jason Warren is thrilled with the condition of Bel Sprinter ahead of Saturday's Group 1 Oakleigh Plate. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia

Jason Warren is thrilled with the condition of Bel Sprinter ahead of Saturday’s Group 1 Oakleigh Plate. Photo: Race Horse Photos Australia

Unable to make much of a competitive run of form through the 2015 Autumn Carnival, Bel Sprinter returned to racing for an impressive win in the Group 2 Caulfield Sprint (1200m); progressing to a credible sixth in the Group 2 Salinger Stakes (1200m) and returning to the paddock after a luckless run for seventh in the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) on November 22nd.

Known to jump poorly from the barriers, Warren conceded Bel Sprinter is likely to find the back of the pack from any alley, and will likely be offered a far-greater racing line from outside his 2015 Oakleigh Plate competitors.

“I’d prefer to draw 18 than 1 with him,” Warren told TVN.

“I know it’s not ideal but I’m a lot happier to be out there than a lot of other trainers would be.

“He’s had two trials – I gave him a soft trial behind Lankan Rupee at Cranbourne, then he had a really good hit-out at Balnarring last week and he’s pretty wound up and ready to go.”

Posting five wins and a further three minor place finishes over his 25 start career so far, Bel Sprinter undoubtedly found career-best form over the 2013 edition of the Autumn Carnival; taking out the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m) first-up and progressing to a credible third behind superstar Black Caviar in the Group 1 T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) before a close run for second in the Group 1 International Sprint (1200m) in Singapore.

Yet to be confirmed for a specific path beyond the 2015 Oakleigh Plate, Warren remains bullish of the Bel Esprit gelding’s first-up chances and will use results to dictate his campaign.

“Let’s just see how he wins tomorrow then we’ll make decisions,” he said.

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