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While Bunbury trainer Rick Price will be without the undefeated Smoko in this summer’s feature Perth sprints, he is already looking ahead to the WA Oaks 2014 for up-and-coming filly My Sister Lil.
A three-year-old daughter of top Aussie sire Snitzel, My Sister Lil is a promising type who has had just the one career start to date.
After two Bunbury trials over 1000m, including a two length winning effort in mid-November, the $80,000 yearling buy debut at Ascot on November 27.
There she took on a decent field of fellow three-year-olds and was able to hold on and defeat Shalo by a quarter length.
Knowing she’s going to improve with more distance Price, who co-trains with his son Clint, now has her set for the $250,000 Group 2 W.A. Oaks (2400m) on March 29.
“We put her straight out for a little break and she might head to the Oaks,” Price told The West Australian.
“She’s bred to get over a bit of a trip.”
Another Snitzel prodigy, gelding four-year-old Smoko meanwhile has sizzled on the track since their debut win in May posting five from five at Belmont Park and then Ascot by a combined 16 lengths.
They were to be stepped up to stakes company this Perth Summer Racing Carnival before suffering from a bruised heel.
The bruising was discovered after Smoko, who has been compared to leading WA Sprinter Barakey on more than one occasion, pulled up sore after their latest win, a blistering two and a half length effort over Tiger Peter in the $60,000 Tapia 3YO’s Benchmark 78 (1200m) on November 9.
Price remained hopeful they could recover in time for a shot at the $100,000 Listed RS Crawford Stakes (1000m) Saturday week.
The December 1 target however is likely to come around too quickly with Smoko taking longer than first thought to make a full recovery.
“It took him a bit longer to get over the bruised heels,” Price said.
“We had to wait a bit longer than we thought to bring him back in.
“He’s just been wading at the beach and we’ll wait and see how he comes up.
They’ve been back in work for less than a week meaning that without the Crawford Stakes lead-up they are also highly unlikely to be ready for the $100,000 Listed Summer Scorcher (1000m) on Perth Cup Day, January 1.
Following the Summer Scorcher though there are two more WA summer feature sprints with the $100,000 Listed WATC Stakes (1100m) on January 11 and the Miss Andretti Stakes over 1200m on January 25 that Smoko will hopefully be right for.
“He won’t race until the New Year, but we won’t know until we start working him,” Price said.
“With a horse like him you have to make sure they’re right.”
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