Black Heart Bart’s racing future remains uncertain, despite winning a barrier trial on Tuesday.
The 1200m heat at Belmont was seen as a pivotal marker for Black Heart Bart after his disappointing run in the Roma Cup (1200m) at Ascot on May 16.
The rising ten-year-old failed to beat a runner home and finished last in the field of 12 starters, prompting concern his acclaimed career was drawing to an end.
But top horseman Lindsey Smith was prepared to admit he erred and could have over trained Black Heart Bart in the lead-up to the Roma Cup.
Smith sent Black Heart Bart back to trials to determine if he retained an appetite and zest for racing. The Blackfriars gelding led and won a three horse heat by 2 1/2 lengths.
Despite the win, Smith was not entirely won over by the performance.
“I’m still not sure and he will have another trial at Lark Hill,” Smith told The Races WA.
“That trial is ahead to the Hyperion Stakes (1600m).
“I’m not certain where he is at. I’m not totally convinced.
“I’d say he is 50-50 at the moment.”
Black Heart Bart caused a major surprise last September when he won the Group 1 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield.
In his first campaign for Smith, he also came close to a Group 1 double when runner-up in the Caulfield Stakes (2000m).
The son of Blackfriars has won close to $5 million in prize money after recording 17 wins from his 61 start career.
Meanwhile Smith said Humidor was on track for his Western Australian debut in the Group 3 Belmont Sprint (1400m) on Saturday.
“He is going along well, but we will see the best of him in the Hyperion Stakes,” Smith said.
“I want to see him running on and finishing past at least half the field on Saturday.”
Humidor, a two-time Cox Plate (2040m) placegetter, has not raced since last November after a sixth in the Sandown Classic (2400m).
Since the seven-year-old transferred to Smith’s team he has run in two barrier trials.
The gelding is $18 with Tabtouch for the Belmont Sprint.
The Hyperion Stakes is run on June 13.