Lindsey Smith is prepared to acknowledge he could have contributed to Black Heart Bart’s poor performance in the Group 3 Amelia Park Roma Cup (1200m) at Ascot on Saturday.
Black Heart Bart ran a disappointing last in the Roma Cup, beaten eight lengths by Vega Magic, which raised speculation that the rising ten-year-old was headed for retirement.
Under Smith’s care in Melbourne last year, Black Heart Bart revived memories of past glories with a shock win in the Group 1 Underwood Stakes at (1800m) at Caulfield.
A star in Perth before he scaled elite heights in Melbourne, the Roma Cup marred a fairtyale home coming for Black Heart Bart, who was racing on his home track for the first time in close to three years.
Deflated, but not prepared to give up, Smith is ready to throw a lifeline to Black Heart Bart, but says a pivotal trial next week could determine his immediate future.
“I think I over trained him,” Smith told The Races WA.
“I don’t know, but I think he might have been flat because of it.
“I had increased his work load because he missed a trial.
“I want to give the horse the opportunity to give me an answer.
“He will trial on Monday and we will know more then.
“If he gets through he will go straight to the Hyperion Stakes.
“That means he will miss next week’s Belmont Sprint.
“I wouldn’t butter him up, it would be defeating the purpose.”
Meanwhile Smith has ruled out emerging stayer Too Close The Sun contesting the Melbourne spring carnival.
A winner of the Terang Cup (2150m) and the Warrnambool Cup (2350m), the son of Carlton House failed to clinch an automatic start in the Melbourne Cup (3200m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Rated a big chance in the Listed Ramsden Stakes (2800m), Too Close The Sun faded quickly from on-pace and only beat one runner home when 10th to Oceanex.
“He looked bright after, I didn’t predict it before the race,” Smith said.
“He hit the brick wall, but he has to learn to be a race horse.
“He sort of got on the bridle when that horse eyeballed him.
“He is only young and early into his career.
“He has to learn to handle different situations.
“Obviously disappointed with how far he finished, but I would rather that than running sixth and being at his best.
“Then you sort of know where your limit is.
“I still think he is six months away.
“I thought about the Moonee Valley Cup, but sleeping on it he will stay at home and go for the Perth Cup.
“He will be coming home during the week.”