Vega Magic has displayed his wares in brilliant fashion over the short course, but trainer Sean Casey is not convinced his talented gelding will be restricted to a sprinting career.
Casey has drawn the curtain on Vega Magic’s winter campaign, spelling the son of Lope De Vega and plotting a path to the Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) in October.
WA’s premier $1 million sprint looms large on the horizon for Vega Magic, who enhanced his reputation with a record-breaking victory at Belmont on Saturday.
Vega Magic is touted as the next star of WA racing and ended his three-year-old season in thumping fashion, turning the Kirin Megumi Handicap (1200m) into a one act affair.
Forced to lump a career high 58.5kg and defying the extreme outside gate, the exciting sprinter accelerated away at the top of the straight and defeated Gigante by 3 ¼ lengths.
Adding lustre to Vega Magic’s seventh career victory was a new Westspeed bonus record, his $175,000 eclipsing Sheidel’s previous mark of $167,500 set last year.
Casey, based at Ascot, heaped praise on his stable star, who has yet to finish outside of the first three in 10 lifetime outings.
“I don’t know of a lot of horses that can come out with best sectionals racing from the front,” Casey said on TABradio.
“It’s just amazing how eager he is in finding the line and it makes me think you have to be wary that this horse could go further.
“He is such a professional and I can see him getting more ground and not just sticking to the shorter courses.
“I don’t want to typeset him to just sprinting because he might get further.”
Casey admits he is in foreign territory with Vega Magic and concedes the weight of public expectation is mounting ahead of the Ascot carnival later this year.
The Ascot horseman says he hasn’t been shy in seeking sage advice from several of Western Australia’s leading and experienced trainers.
“I’ve talked to Fred Kersley about him because I know with his potential the sky is the limit about him,” Casey said.
“I’ve also spoken to Jimmy (Taylor) and Trevor Andrews.
“He is a horse who we obviously have not had before so all the input we can get off people who have had these type of horses before will be really handy.”
Casey also seeks counsel from retired Group 1 trainer, George Daly, who races Vega Magic in partnership with his brother Wally.
Daly prepared outstanding sprinter Jacks Or Better to win 19 races and almost $1 million in prizemoney including the Railway Stakes and Karrakatta Plate.
“He really refers to Jacks Or Better a lot, but he thinks this horse is a lot stronger and sounder,” Casey said.”
RWWA: Julio Santarelli