WARRNAMBOOL trained galloper Triple Missile looks likely to head to the spelling paddock after his impressive victory in the $130,000 Winter Championship at Flemington on Saturday.
Triple Missile, having his second Victorian start for Lindsey Smith, beat stablemate Mystery Shot in the first heat of the championships.
The lightly-raced four-year-old ran fourth in the Wangoom Handicap at his first Victorian run on May 4.
Smith said the main target for Triple Missile might be the $1 million group one Rupert Clarke Stakes at Caulfield in September.
"I'll be having a chat with Triple Missile's owners over the next few days," the astute trainer said.
"My preferred option is to give him a break now and set him for a first-up tilt at the Rupert Clarke Stakes. Triple Missile will come in on the minimum weight in the Rupert Clarke and I think he could be very competitive in a race like that. It would give him a great chance at picking up some excellent prizemoney. I thought his run in the Wangoom was good to run fourth but he might not have been at home on the heavy track. I think he's better on top of the ground."
Smith said he will push forward with plans for Mystery Shot to run in other heats of the Winter Championship before gaining a start in the final.
"The Winter Championships look ideal for Mystery Shot," he said. "Mystery Shot should get in on the minimum weight.
"He's the perfect type of horse to run in the championships. He picked up some valuable points in running second in the first heat on Saturday. I'm confident he'll be very competitive in the other heats before running in the final."
Meanwhile, Smith gave a glowing report on his handy galloper In The Boat, who runs in the $500,000 group one handicap at Morphettville this Saturday.
"I can't fault the condition of In The Boat leading into the Goodwood," the multiple group one winning trainer said. "In The Boat deserves a crack at a group one. He's won his last two in good style but we're aware this is a big jump in class. We've kept him fresh since his last run at Sale by taking him down to the beach. He seems to have thrived on that sort of preparation. Blaike McDougall, who has ridden him in his last two wins at Moonee Valley and Sale, will have the ride in the Goodwood."
Bookmakers rate In The Boat a $6 chance in the early betting markets on the 1200-metre contest.
From his eleven starts, In The Boat has won seven races.
In The Boat has earnt more than $600,000 in stake-money for his connections.
Going forward, top Warrnambool trainer Symon Wilde has outlined some ambitious plans for his promising jumpers Count Zero and Elvison after they scored impressive victories at Casterton on Sunday. Count Zero, with stable jockey Ronan Short in the saddle, took out the open hurdle, while Elvison, ridden by Aaron Kuru, won the open steeplechase by 25 lengths.
"I'm not one for making decisions about horses on race day," Wilde said. "I prefer to get them home and see how they have pulled up. There appears to be plenty of upside to Count Zero and Elvison. Count Zero is an out-and-out stayer, as was shown by his Jericho Cup win on the flat before scoring two strong wins in his two hurdle starts. We may push forward to the Grand National Hurdle with Count Zero."
Wilde, who trained five winners on the opening day of the Warrnambool May Carnival earlier this month, said Elvison may line up in the Thackeray Steeplechase at Warrnambool on July 4.
"We could look at the Australian Steeplechase with Elvison but my first thoughts are the Thackeray," he said. "I'm very confident going forward; there's a lot of improvement in Elvison and Count Zero. They are both relatively inexperienced jumpers who will improve sharply over their Casterton wins."
Apart from Count Zero and Elvison winning the two feature jumps races at Casterton, Coastal Town won a 1200-metre maiden race for Wilde.
Amazing to think it's 50 years since one of Australia's most famous ring-ins occurred at Casterton in 1972.
Rick Renzella pulled off the most audacious coup ever attempted in the racing game, ringing in the crack sprinter Regal Vista for the bumble-footed Royal School in the Muntham Handicap. The coup netted Renzella $33,570, but it led to him being sentenced to two years jail after a criminal trial. Prizemoney for the 1200-metre sprint race was $520, with $325 going to the winner.
Hamilton-trained Apex Star was the favourite for the Muntham after wins at Hamilton and Warrnambool in 1000-metre races.
The Jack Barling-trained galloper would have been an odds-on chance if not for the heavy money for Royal School.
Punters who backed Royal School on the tote picked up $3.80 for a 50 cent investment, but those lucky enough to snare the daily double - Gay Demand in the Casterton Cup into Royal School - got $111.90 for a 50 cent piece.
An off-the-cuff remark from Royal School's jockey Stephen Wood that he was glad the race was over, and that he would get $4000 for his troubles, led to one of Australia's most sensational racing inquiries.
LOVE SCHOOL: ready to break her maiden status following a third placing on Sunday. She'll be hard to beat next time in a race over 1300-metres or more.
CARDINAL GEM: heavily backed but just let his backers down in running second. Had two runs from a spell and is ready to add another win to his record.
KIPPS: one to jot into your little black book following his first run in Australia on Saturday. He finished off the 1600-metre race strongly over the concluding stages. He'll be hard to toss in similar company next time.
DOULL: expensive yearling who repaid some of the $1.2 million purchase price in scoring an impressive win at his debut on Saturday. More wins are in store for this two-year-old.
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