Lark Hill trainer Vaughn Sigley is gearing up for his biggest week in racing but if he is feeling any nerves or jitters he is doing a terrific job of disguising it.
The one-time jockey will put the final polish on stable stars Black Heart Bart and Magnifisio ahead of their Group 1 assault at Ascot on Super Saturday next week.
Black Heart Bart shares favouritism in the $1 million Railway Stakes (1600m) while Magnifisio is second pick in the $1million Winterbottom Stakes (1200m).
Despite the prestige of Group glory and the lure of WA racing’s richest prize purses, Sigley says he will be treating the occasion as just another day.
“I’m not feeling any pressure or nerves at all,” said Sigley.
“Obviously everyone would like to have a horse in a big race, let alone win it.
“But I’m feeling quite good and whatever will be will be.
“Once I leg the jockey up there is not much more I can do.”
The wheel has turned full circle for Black Heart Bart who at this time last year lost his bid to gain a start in the Railway Stakes.
But since the setback he has reeled off an outstanding nine wins and a second from 12 starts including seven black type races.
He remains unbeaten this campaign and capped a faultless preparation in the Lee Steere Stakes (1400m) at Ascot on November 7.
Black Heart Bart will have to challenge history after being allotted top weight of 58kg, but Sigley remains unfazed.
The bay gelding can emulate Luckygray who became the first horse to set a metric weight carrying record in 2013.
“I’m not being over confident but I not bothered by the weight,” said Sigley.
“To me it just evens the race up a little and gives the others a chance.
“He is going along nicely and won’t be slowing down.”
Black Heart Bart and Real Love are currently $4.20 with the TAB. Star mare, Delicacy, who is sure to improve on her first-up third in the Lee Steere Stakes, is $5.
While Black Heart Bart has been an established member of Sigley’s team from the outset, Magnifisio, who won the Winterbottom Stakes for Jim Taylor last year, is a new stable acquisition.
A first up defeat to Akhedasset in the Prince Of Wales Stakes (1200m) raised eyebrows but she atoned with a top second to Black Heart Bart in the Lee Steere Stakes.
“I thought she was enormous after missing the start,” said Sigley.
“In fact, I think both her runs have been enormous.”
Sigley cautions punters not write off Dawn Approach in the Winterbottm Stakes. The Statue Of Liberty gelding split Akhedasset and Magnifisio in the Prince Of Wales Stakes.
“He is rated a $26 chance and Magnifisio $6. They shouldn’t be that apart,” said Sigley.
Queensland sprinter Buffering is the $4.60 favourite.
RWWA: Julio Santarelli