This Saturday local Flemington horseman John Sadler will see if the hat fits in the 2013 Winter Championship Series Final when he saddles up the progressive Under The Hat in the end of season feature.
There are currently 26 entries for the lucrative $150,000 Listed Winter Championship Series Final (1600m) running as part of finals day at Flemington this weekend, one of the gallopers assured of a start in the capacity 16 starter field being Under The Hat.
Having had just the one black type start before when sixth in the 2012 Albury Gold Cup, Helenus six-year-old Under The Hat has been in top form this time in.
Both of their winter starts have been in the Winter Championship Series heats.
First-up they were a length and a half away fourth to That’s The One on June 8 before improving by one place when third behind Club Command and Another Prelate, both also nominated for Saturday’s final, in a 1410m heat on June 22.
Those good runs have seen Under The Hat sit third on the ballot with the 2013 Winter Championship Series Final field and barriers due out shortly.
“He hasn’t won many races because he got up in the ratings quickly without really going through his classes,” Sadler said.
“The other thing that has stopped him in the past is we’ve had trouble with his feet, especially during his last preparation and touch wood this time in work his feet have been trouble free.”
The trainer has confirmed his son Tom Sadler, an up and coming apprentice jockey, will ride Under The Hat on the weekend having partnered with them for their two runs last month.
Both the horse and the hoop are vying for their break through stakes victory.
As a back-up Sadler also nominated Under The Hat for the $80,000 National Patient Transport Rising Stars Final (1800m) at the same meeting but said the Winter Championship was the one they were targeting.
The horse had a pleasing gallop on Tuesday morning and Sadler’s only concern is if they draw a wide gate.
“He galloped well this morning, he had a bit of a blow but he’s done extremely well and I’m really pleased with him,” Sadler said on Tuesday.
“His first two runs this preparation have been really good and he surprisingly ran well first up which he doesn’t usually do.
“I’d like to see him draw an inside gate so that he can take a forward position and not have to get so far back in the race.”
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