Broadmeadow horseman Kris Lees has voiced his concerns over an awkward barrier draw for his former Group 1 placegetter Uate who tackles a smart field of sprinters in the Canterbury Classic 2013 in Sydney.
The Ad Valorem gelding enjoyed a stellar first campaign as a juvenile back in the autumn of 2011, the highlight of which was a close second to Darley star Helmet in the Group 1 AJC Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) which came on the back of three straight wins.
Failing on a Heavy (10) track at Royal Randwick next start the then two-year-old could only manage to finish eighth to Helmet again in the Group 1 Champagne Stakes, which was also their first look at the mile, before they were turned out for a spell.
Since then it has been a serious of setbacks and below par performances form Uate who didn’t win again until November last year when they carried 58kg to victory over 1250m at Canterbury.
Last seen running a brave third to Testarhythm in the Listed Takeover Target Stakes (1200m) at Gosford on January 10, Uate returns to the venue of their most recent win for the Friday night highlight at Canterbury Park – the $100,000 Listed Canterbury BMW Classic (1100m).
Following the early withdrawal of the original favourite Sessions from the Canterbury Classic, the bookmaker.com.au markets are led by last year’s winner Unanimously ($3.60).
Uate meanwhile currently occupies the fourth line of betting at a quote of $6.
While happy with their run last start, Lees isn’t sure how Uate will handle jumping from barrier six (of eight) in the Classic.
“Uate will need luck but if the breaks go his way he could be some hope,” he said.
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