LAST season’s best two-year-old Admiral will be out to avenge his first-up loss to the unbeaten Valiant Warrior when he steps out in the 3YO Trophy over 1400 metres at The TOTE Racing Centre in Launceston tomorrow night.
Admiral was beaten fair and square by the Adam Trinder-trained Valiant Warrior that made it four wins from as many starts in the 3YO Cup over 1200 metres.
Admiral’s trainer Barry Campbell said he was pleased with his horse’s effort in the 3YO Cup but expects him to be better suited in tomorrow night’s feature.
“You can’t take anything away from the winner (Valiant Warrior) because he did a good job to lead throughout but I expect my horse to really appreciate stepping up to the 1400 metres and he also will be without the blinkers and that also will help him,” Campbell said.
Admiral excelled last season winning the last four feature juvenile races on the calendar including the Sires Produce Stakes over 1400m in Launceston.
“He will be better over 1400m but I think we will see the best of him when he gets to 1600m in the Tasmanian Guineas,” the trainer said.
Valiant Warrior was also nominated for a race in Melbourne but Trinder confirmed this morning after riding the gelding in trackwork that the 3YO Trophy was the best option.
“I couldn’t be happier with my horse’s work this week and he has done well since winning the 3YO Cup,” Trinder said.
“He gets out to beyond 1200 metres for the first time but I am confident he will be strong when he needs to be,” he said.
Valiant Warrior has shown bulldog-like tenacity in his four starts but he will probably need to call on all of his courage to hold out Admiral.
Bella Venus also must be considered given her impressive performances to be unbeaten from three starts against older horses this preparation.
The Charlie Goggin and Luella Meaburn-trained filly was courageous last start to defy being taken on for most of the race to win a class two event over 1400 metres.
At her previous outing she won a class one handicap with top Victorian hoop Michael Rodd aboard and he said after that race the filly was good enough to be racing in quality races in Melbourne.
Other chances in what is arguably the best 3YO Trophy in years, are Geegees Goldengirl, Col’s Hero, Shayana and Admiral’s stablemate Calavera that Campbell regards as his Derby horse.
The 3YO Trophy is race six on the nine-event card and the first leg of the quadrella.