Brock Lewthwaite has backed his judgement and will give Art Warrior a shot of winning the Aquanita Stakes (2000m) at Belmont Park on Saturday.
Lewthwaite toyed with the idea of Art Warrior bypassing the Aquanita Stakes, but his confidence grew after his solid run in the Belmont Guineas (1600m).
The My Admiration colt was doing his best work late when fifth to Sheza Chalmer and Lewthwaite says he’ll be further improved over more ground.
Art Warrior will go into the Aquanita Stakes as the least experienced runner, having two starts following his debut fourth at Pinjarra earlier this month.
Lewthwaite believes staying potential can prevail over race experience. He’s upbeat Art Warrior will be more than competitive in the Aquanita Stakes.
“His run in the Belmont Guineas was too good to ignore,” Lewthwaite told The Races WA.
“He was only warming up at the mile and is ready for 2000m.
“I think he could develop into a pretty handy stayer.
“We won’t see the best of him until 2000m and beyond.
“He’s a half-brother to Musical Art, my first ever winner.
“He had two wins at 2000m and one over 2200m.
“I really think he can run a race in the Aquanita.”
Lewthwaite hopes his patient approach with Art Warrior can reap dividends.
He said unveiling the lightly-raced three-year for a winter campaign was always in his plans.
“He was just a bit of a slow developer and slow learner,” Lewthwaite said.
“He was never ready for the WA Derby earlier in the year, he was nowhere near strong enough.
“The hope was always to target these winter races.”
Art Warrior went around at big odds in the Belmont Guineas, but no similar price afforded in the Aquanita.
In current TAB markets he’s $9. Crescent City the $2.90 favourite.
Art Warrior will jump from barrier one for new rider, Pat Carbery.
Carbery is a triple winner of the Aquanita Stakes after previous victories on Spook (1997), Northerly (2000m) and Master Minx (2005).