There will be no comment from the trainer of 2013 BTC Cup (1200m) favourite Buffering in the lead-up to Saturday’s Eagle Farm feature but Queensland’s reigning horse of the year remains on track to record his maiden Group 1 win.
The five-year-old zipped around Doomben in a track gallop this morning but trainer Robert Heathcote refused to comment on the workout.
Heathcote is still seething following a $500 fine he received on Monday for comments made in a blog about the ride of Larry Cassidy on Listen Son against Buffering in the Victory Stakes.
The major focus of the stewards’ inquiry came from Heathcote’s blog comment that “No doubt Cassidy’s ‘job’ … was to try and bring Buffering down.”
Chief steward Wade Birch said the remarks were prejudicial to the image of racing, leaving an angry Heathcote to enact a full media ban.
Buffering will start as favourite in the BTC Cup after he blew his rivals away with a 3 1/2 length win in the Victory Stakes on April 27.
Queensland’s number one sprinter appeared poised to take the BTC Cup last year before a stonebruise injury ruled him out on the eve of the race.
Now a seven-time Group 1 placegetter, Buffering then went on to finish second in both the Doomben 10,000 and the Stradbroke.
Fully fit and raring to go this year, the five-year-old still has to beat some high quality rivals including defending champion Sea Siren and Joe Pride’s front-runner Rain Affair.
The pair are due to arrive in Brisbane later this week.
Rain Affair is coming off a strong second to All Too Hard in the All Aged Stakes while Sea Siren will need to improve on a fifth-place effort in the TJ Smith.
The final BTC Cup field will be released tomorrow and once it is known great odds will be found at bookmaker.com.au, the fully Australian-owned and operated bookie and home of the $500 bonus bet offer!