Wednesday, 21 March 2012
: Queanbeyan trainer Neville Layt has warned punters not to dismiss his speedster Red Excitement in Saturday's Todman Slipper Trial at Rosehill.
And despite running eighth in the Black Opal Stakes [1200m] in Canberra two weekends ago, Layt still believes he has the horse capable of representing the stable in a second straight Golden Slipper.
Layt ran Karuta Queen
in last year's $3.5m juvenile feature, who led at the 300m before fading to 10th and finishing six lengths behind dominant winner Sepoy
may not be as highly credentialed as his stablemate was leading into last year's Slipper, but Layt said his best was still to come and has already dismissed the Black Opal performance.
“The only thing that beat him the other day was the track over there,” Layt said.
“He was jogging, trotting until he got into the straight. [Former jockey Ron] Dufficy summed it up in one the other day when he turned around and said it was a joke that track, running a helicopter along the fence and not doing anywhere else.
“That's a fact and that's how it played. Kevin [Sweeney] said he was going absolutely three-quarter pace until he hit the straight and he says the track was the only thing that beat him, he was slipping and sliding everywhere.
“He finished five lengths behind the winner.”
The Canberra track, which had soaked up plenty of water in the lead-up to its biggest race day, tended to favour the inside horses for most of the day.
Peter Snowden's Epaulette
and John O'Shea's Faustus
grabbed the quinella that day, and both are running in Saturday's Todman Slipper Trial (1200m).
Unbeaten Gai Waterhouse colt Pierro
is also turning out, as is Gerald Ryan flyer Amorino
Red Excitement ran four lengths behind Pierro when the pair debuted in last year's listed Breeders Plate (1000m) at Randwick.
“He's in a very strong race,” Layt said.
“You've got to be in them to win them mate. If you're not you have no hope.”
In a busy week for the stable, Karuta Queen will return to racing in Saturday's Maurice McCarten Stakes (1100m) while three-year-old filly Our Brightest Star
, who ran fourth in the Canberra Guineas last time in, will contest the Albury Guineas on Friday.