Record-breaking Melbourne horseman Darren Weir will take on Winx with his flying Perth expat Black Heart Bart after the galloper’s Underwood Stakes 2016 win for the punters over the weekend.
Saluting in elite level company for the third time, Blackfriars six-year-old Black Heart Bart has set up a scintillating showdown with Australia’s best racehorse Winx after winning the $500,000 Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield Racecourse on September 24.
Black Heart Bart won the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) first up before a last start second to the fellow Weir-trained Palentino at Flemington last start in the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m).
He atoned for the narrow loss when stepping up over further than a mile for the first time in the Underwood, more than handling the extra metres with a runaway 2.5 length victory as the $2.20 favourite.
It was the first Underwood Stakes win by a favourite since So You Think (2010) and saw jockey Brad Rawiller celebrate his second win in the weight-for-age Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival feature after his victory on Weekend Hussler (2008).
Rawiller gave Black Heart Bart a patient and well-timed ride, rallying late to storm home clear of the Lindsay Park-trained runner-up He Or She ($12) who placed in a Group 1 for the second time on the trot after the third in the Makybe Diva Stakes.
Finishing off the 2016 Underwood Stakes trifecta a mere short half-head away third was Kris Lees’ returning mare Lucia Valentina ($5.50) who looked to have come back in fine order.
Black Heart Bart will race again on October 8 stepping out over more metres in the $600,000 Group 1 Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes (2000m) where he will take on Chris Waller’s Cox Plate winner Winx.
The duo could then come head-to-head again in the $3 million Group 1 W.S. Cox Plate (2040m) at Moonee Valley on October 22.
“I never had any doubts about the 1,800 metres,” Weir said post-Underwood Stakes win on Saturday.
“I thought he ran really well last start, he was just beaten by a better horse on the day.
“Today he was strong through the line so we’ll head to the Caulfield Stakes next start and then see what happens after that I guess.”
To back Black Heart Bart for an upset win over Winx next start head to Ladbrokes.com.au now!
2016 Underwood Stakes Finishing Order
Caulfield Race 8 – Saturday, September 24, 2016
|1||2||BLACK HEART BART||Darren Weir||Brad Rawiller||–||6||59kg||$2.20F|
|2||7||HE OR SHE||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Craig Williams||2.5L||1||59kg||$12|
|3||11||LUCIA VALENTINA (NZ)||Kris Lees||Damien Oliver||2.6L||5||57kg||$5.50|
|4||5||JACQUINOT BAY||David & B Hayes & T Dabernig||Damian Lane||2.8L||3||59kg||$41|
|5||6||AWESOME ROCK||Leon & Troy Corstens||Stephen Baster||3.55L||2||59kg||$6.50|
|6||4||THE CLEANER||Peter Gelagotis||Steven Arnold||3.85L||10||59kg||$21|
|7||10||HOWARD BE THY NAME||Darren Weir||Mark Zahra||5.85L||4||58kg||$71|
|8||8||TARZINO (NZ)||Mick Price||Craig Newitt||7.35L||9||58kg||$12|
|9||1||PRINCE OF PENZANCE (NZ)||Darren Weir||John Allen||8.1L||7||59kg||$31|
|10||9||TAVAGO (NZ)||Trent Busuttin & Natalie Young||Nicholas Hall||18.1L||8||58kg||$19|
|–||3||OUR IVANHOWE (GER)||Lee & Anthony Freedman||Kerrin McEvoy||–||0||–||–|