Western Australia’s latest sprinting sensation Barakey faces his toughest test to date when he lines in the Group 1 $500,000 Crown Perth-Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot on Saturday.
And trainer Jim Taylor didn’t hide his disappointment when Barakey drew the outside barrier of ten in the weight for age sprint this weekend.
“I was shattered when he drew 10 and Travinator drew one,” Taylor said.
“I would think Travinator would be hard to beat now.
“From out there they’ll all be looking for him.”
Barakey has created a huge following in the west after winning ten from ten and Taylor is stepping the five year old up to the top level after an easy win in the Group 3 $125,000 Yellowglen-Colonel Reeves Stakes (1100m) at Ascot on November 6.
Like Barakey, Travinator has come up through the classes and trainer Daniel Pearce is also testing the four year old at Group 1 level after scoring his seventh victory from nine starts with runaway win over 1000m in restricted class at Ascot on November 3.
Travinator had better luck than Barakey at the barrier draw, coming up with gate one, putting a smile on the face of owner breeder Colin Pearce.
“I’m really happy with that,” Pearce said.
“He’s trained on really well.”
Gai Waterhouse’s Hallowell Belle drew near the outside in the small field at seven while Peter Snowden’s representative Pinwheel will start from outside the mare at eight.
Corey Brown will take over on Hallowell Belle from Craig Williams who is in Japan for this weekends’ Japan Cup while stable rider Kerrin McEvoy has retained the ride on seven year old Pinwheel.
Waterhouse’s stable rider Nash Rawiller has elected to ride the Tony Gollan trained Spirit Of Boom after partnering the five year old when second to Fontelina in the Group 2 $300,000 Yellowglen Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on November 3.
Rawiller is sure to give Spirit Of Boom the run of the race from gate two giving the Sequalo entire every chance of winning his first Group 1 race.
The undefeated Barakey has been installed the $2.25 favourite ahead of Travinator and Hallowell Belle who share the next line of betting at $5 with local mare Power Princess at $7.50 and Pinwheel at $9.