Winterbottom Stakes 2013 Assignment for Barakey

After initially looking to have run their last race due to major knee damage super WA sprinter Barakey is working hard towards a turf return with trainer Jim Taylor hoping to have them ready for a title defense in the 2013 Winterbottom Stakes this summer.

A winner of their opening 11 starts including last year’s $500,000 Group 1 Crown Perth Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot in November, the Bullsbrook-based Key Business gelding made their interstate debut this autumn in Melbourne.

Resuming off a three and a half month break the boom five-year-old was given their shot at the big time facing a crack field in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Flemington in early March having earlier been scratched from the gates in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 23.

They suffered their first defeat however, and it was a nasty one.

Pulling up severely lame after the race having lost a plate along with some of his hoof Barakey beat home just two of his rivals when 11th , beaten nearly 10 lengths by the Danny O’Brien-trained Shamexpress.

A post-race examination by veterinary surgeon Kim Rose that included the removal of a bone chip revealed the worst.

Barakey was found to have no cartilage left in his offside knee.

Taylor has been doing everything in his power since to help Barakey overcome the setback including work on a treadmill.

“He has been on the treadmill for the last two weeks,” Taylor told The West Australian this week.

“He goes on for a half hour in the morning and a half hour in the afternoon.”

He is hoping his persistence and patience, as well as the horse’s steely attitude, will pay off as he considers resuming them in the $125,000 Group 3 Prince Of Wales Stakes (1200m) at Ascot on October 26 – Cox Plate Day in Melbourne.

“Kim Rose said to give him five months off and I gave him four,” Taylor said.

“By the time I start riding him it will be 4½ months. He looks magnificent.”

If that goes well then they will begin to focus on the Perth Summer Racing Carnival where they will shoot for back-to-back Winterbottom Stakes wins on November 23.

“I will start riding him in about a week,” Taylor added.

“He either comes up for the Prince Of Wales and Winterbottom this spring otherwise he doesn’t race for 18 months.”

It is shaping up as a crack edition of the Winterbottom Stakes this year too with other notable hopes including Brisbane galloper Buffering, Spirit Of Boom, Conservatorium, Bel Sprinter and the up-and-coming local star Smoko.

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