Jason Warren’s once very promising speedster Bel Sprinter is recovering well from a throat operation and is back in work nearing their 2013 race return.
The smart Bel Esprit five-year-old kicked off their career in sensational style as a three-year-old, the gelding not raced as a juvenile, winning their opening four career starts including a Listed sprint at Caulfield in August of 2011 by an impressive three lengths.
They were stepped up to Group company at start number five when running second to Lone Rock in the Group 3 Bobbie Lewis Quality at Flemington after which they were turned out for a five month spell.
A first-up win in another Caulfield black type was to follow in February last year before Bel Sprinter raced in their maiden Group 1 assignment finishing a credible sixth when beaten one and a half lengths by Rob Heathcote’s Brisbane raider Woorim in the Oakleigh Plate.
Things have been hit and miss for Bel Sprinter since then with the horse winning just one of their six subsequent race starts when taking out the Group 3 McEwen Stakes (1000m) in their spring return back in September.
Bel Sprinter was last seen running a disappointing ninth to Mental when beaten seven lengths in the Group 1 Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) at Flemington on Emirates Stakes Day during the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
They were found to be suffering a throat condition where their vocal folds had to be lasered away, an operation that took place almost immediately after their Patianck Farm Classic defeat.
“They’re a very common procedure these days, half to three quarters of them work, and hopefully he’s on the right side of that ledger,” Warren said of the surgery Bel Sprinter underwent.
Warren is also unsure of whether they are a genuine 1200m horse or if they should be kept to 1000m races.
“He was still very effective even with the throat issue at the 1000, it was only when we stretched him to 1200 that he couldn’t do it,” he said.
“He won with the problem when he won the Group 3 McEwen Stakes first up at Moonee Valley last preparation, it wasn’t as if the problem just appeared.”
Since their operation the horse has been making terrific progress and Warren hopes to see them back under race conditions in two to three months’ time.
“He came through the operation really well and I’m happy with the way his throat looks,” Warren said.
“He’ll hopefully be at the races in around two to three months.”
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