ASCOT CARNIVAL UNLIKELY FOR WINTER STAR

2
Aug

Amid Perth’s wet and gloomy winter, The Spruiker has been the shining light on local racing.

The I’m All The Talk gelding has been a revelation for veteran trainer Steve Wolfe, winning five straight races in an unbeaten Belmont campaign.

Aside from boosting to his strike rate, The Spruiker has lifted prizemoney and bonuses to nearly half a million dollars from just 12 starts.

From a 1300m win in May to last Saturday’s victory over 1650m, The Spruiker, not much in size, but big in heart, has made rapid improvement.

The Spruiker is now in the paddock for a well deserved break with Wolfe left to ponder what future path he may take with his four-year-old.

But despite The Spuiker’s swift progress, Wolfe is almost certain to bypass the Ascot carnival and take a conservative approach.

“I’m loathe to have a crack at the carnival here because I know it’s a different ball game,” Wolfe told Tabradio.

“He’s a lightly-framed horse and has pulled up a million dollars, but I think we’d probably dodge around the edges at this stage.

“I will look at him again in three or four weeks to see where he is up to.

“A race like the Barker Sprint and the Fitzpatrick Plate, perhaps the Bunbury Stakes might not be beyond him.

“We’ll let him do the talking, he’s a very sound horse at this stage of his life.”

The Spruiker capped a career-best season for Wolfe who claimed 20 Perth wins.

Signature performances came when Watch Me Dance won the WA Guineas (1600m) and Champion Fillies Stakes (1600m).

Wolfe also took out Perth’s richest race for two-year-olds, the Karrakatta Plate (1200m) with Ex Sport Man.

He said The Spruiker has been a genuine surprise packet and sits nicely alongside his black-type winners.

“He’s been really, really good,” Wolfe said.

“Every time we’ve raised the bar he’s jumped it.

“We thought if we could win a couple of races as a three-year-old it would be great.

“What he’s done has been quite abnormal and quite sensational really.

“We are so proud of the little fella, he’s done a really good job.”

Meanwhile Wolfe said Red Can Man is a chance to return home and tackle the Ascot carnival.

Red Can Man won the Monash Stakes (1100m) and last-start ran sixth in the Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield.

“I would think if he didn’t go close at his next two starts he will be back home,” Wolfe said.

“We don’t want to cook him over there running fourths and fifths.

“He’ll be on a plane coming home if he doesn’t measure up.”

Julio Santarelli