IT can be easy to overlook the subplots of Saturday’s Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes with protagonist Winx stealing most of the headlines, but don’t sleep on Lasqueti Spirit.
The 2016 Crown Oaks winner might not have the sprint to match the likes of champion mare Winx and top import Hartnell, but this isn’t its grand final and trainer Lee Curtis will be looking for improvement.
The three-year-old filly scored an incredible 3.75-length win in the Crown Oaks to break its maiden status and another Oaks tilt is on the cards in April.
Curtis isn’t just making up the numbers with Lasqueti Spirit in the Chipping Norton Stakes, but it needs the race fitness and punters should expect to see improvement after running 10th behind Winx in the Apollo Stakes.
“She’s so ineffective over 1400m it’s ridiculous, she has no tactical speed whatsoever,” Curtis told horsebetting.com.au.
“She gets a lot more effective over more distance and we’re treating this as preparation towards the Oaks – that’s the ultimate goal.”
In winning the Crown Oaks, Lasqueti Spirit was able to free-roll in front and similar tactics are likely to be adopted in the Chipping Norton.
“We’ll go forward, there doesn’t look to be a whole lot of speed. We’ll be hoping to roll along and we’d love to see her run in the first half of the field,” Curtis said.
Lasqueti Spirit is currently +1400 at Sportsbet.com.au to win the Australian Oaks at Randwick and for Curtis, it’s all about getting the fitness under its belt.
“We need to have good conditioning runs in her. It’s no good not trying till the Oaks because she won’t be fit,” Curtis explained.
“She needs a good hit out, she’s a tough filly that will handle anything you throw at her.”