Grant Williams’ last start Roma Cup winner Battle Hero has opened favourite to score back-to-back wins in Western Australia in Saturday’s Belmont Sprint 2016.
The four-year-old son of Stratum is one of 13 hopefuls facing off in this year’s $150,000 Group 3 Belmont Sprint (1400m), the weight-for-age clash scheduled to run as Race 7 at 3:50pm (WA time).
Jumping from a gun barrier four draw with Perth’s premier jockey William Pike retaining the ride, Battle Hero is undefeated at the track having made it three-from-three at Belmont Racecourse on May 14.
Improving on two recent Listed seconds at Ascot the galloper contested Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m) at his 16th career start and enjoyed a half-length win over Group 1 winners Magnifisio and Luckygray.
The bookies are tipping him as the best on show again with Battle Hero the one to beat in Belmont Sprint betting paying $3.60 through Ladbrokes.com.au.
In an open market another four runners are under $10 for the win including the placegetters in the Roma Cup a fortnight back.
Vaughn Sigley’s second placed Magnus mare Magnifisio pays $4.40 to turn the tables on Saturday and continue her nice Perth Autumn Racing Carnival campaign.
Best known for her Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) victory in 2014, the now six-year-old has won two of her past three starts and was brave in defeat in the Roma Cup last time out having won the same race two years back.
She’s a genuine hope on the weekend and while she’s stronger over 1200m, still has a gun 1400m record of two wins and three seconds from five starts over the distance to date.
Injury-prone superstar Luckygray returned to racing after a year on the sidelines for a gallant third in the Roma Cup and has a second start this Saturday with Shaun O’Donnell aboard the Trevor Andrews-trained champ in gate six.
A three-time Group 1 winner, interstate elite level performer and winner of nearly $2.7 million in prize money, Bradbury’s Luck eight-year-old Luckygray has had seven previous Belmont runs for five wins and a third.
While he has been only lightly raced due to injury over the past 24 months, all is going well with the evergreen warhorse who will be fitter for his returning run two weeks back and who pays $4.60 in the current Belmont Sprint markets.
Rounding out the single figure fancies are early market mover Wink And A Nod ($6) with the rails run from barrier one and Hazabeel ($9.50) drawn the opposite end of the field in gate 12.
Justin Warwick’s McFlirt mare Wink And A Nod has Lucky Warwick aboard again, the six-year-old having won the Listed Old Comrade Stakes (1600m) at Ascot over Battle Hero (2nd) two back before a third in another Ascot Black-Type over 1400m on April 16 behind Magnifisio.
Hazabeel has the wider alley here after a nice run from barrier one when fourth in the Roma Cup first-up, the Group 3 winning Zabeel five-year-old shooting for a fourth win from six starts at Belmont.
Check out the full Belmont Sprint 2016 betting markets below, fixed win odds provided by Ladbrokes.com.au – home of Odds Boost!