Mornington horseman John McArdle is hoping his improving three-year-old Beleeup can repeat their Flemington upset last time out when they again go out at double figures in Saturday’s $120,000 Listed A.R. Creswick Series Final(1200m).
The Bel Esprit gelding came off a string of five unplaced runs before finally breaking their maiden status on June 28 when holding out to defeat the Peter Moody-trained Handsome Ransom in heat five of the AR Creswick Series.
It was a major upset as Beleeup jumped at $61 and they can again be found at a nice price for Saturday’s final.
McArdle had been confident pre-race a fortnight ago with the horse showing plenty of potential in their lead-up gallop the Tuesday before.
“His track rider got off him on the Tuesday and said he wouldn’t get beaten and he went out and won at Flemington,” McArdle told AAP on Friday.
The horse ran well again this week at Mornington leading up to Saturday, and while it wasn’t quite the same performance as their last lead-up, they still ran 600m in under 37 seconds.
For their heat win they had a gun run from barrier one but won’t have things quite their way for their black-type debut having come up with barrier 15 of 16.
Chris Symons stays in the saddle and Beleeup pays $26 in the latest AR Creswick Series Final odds at Ladbrokes.com.au.
To help the up-and-comer overcome the wide draw McArdle will instruct Symons to let them settle off the pace in the second half of the pack before chasing them down in the finish.
“Riding him differently has started to wake him up but he’s still a dig dumb kid that will meet a better class of field tomorrow,” McArdle said.
“He’s like a 14-year-old kid. He’s all legs and he concentrates for about four minutes a day but that’s him.”
After Saturday the plan is to send Beleeup straight to the paddock where they will enjoy a lengthy spell bypassing the spring carnival in favour of a summer return.
One of their likely targets will then be the Group 3 Standish Handicap (1200m) back at Flemington on New Year’s Day.
The latest AR Creswick Series Final betting markets are led by Miss Promiscuity at $4.60, the three time winner and Group 3 runner-up having her first run for new trainer Anthony Cummings.
While they face some notable opposition, McArdle remains hopeful that Beleeup can again surprise the punters and come up with another win.
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