Co-trainers Dan and Ben Pearce will delay deciding on Vital Silver’s racing future after the seven-year-old underwent surgery on Wednesday.

Vital Silver had a throat operation after finishing last in the Miss Andretti Stakes (1100m) on January 16.

The below par performance followed a 13th placing in the Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) last November and raised speculation that his racing days were numbered.

Ben Pearce said Vital Silver would enjoy an extended break before a call is made on his return to racing.

“After consultation we thought it was worth having the operation,” Pearce said.

“Whatever happens going forward it’s going to help him at some stage whether it’s racing or post racing.

“He’ll have a six to eight week break and then we’ll bring him back for a slow build up.

“We’ll assess him then, but his future is still to be decided, there are no firm plans.

“It’s important we get his head right and get the confidence back into him.

“He has been a very good horse to us and we want to see him happy and right.”

Vital Silver has won eight races from 24 starts with $776,400 in stake earnings.

His best wins were in the Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m) and Listed Pinjarra Classic (1300m).

The son of Wanted also came close in Group 1 company when runner-up in the Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley and Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) in Perth.

Meanwhile Pearce has not ruled out Essential Spice posting an upset win in Saturday’s Scenic Blast Stakes at Ascot.

Despite her winless record at 1200m, he believes the five-year-old mare can turn the tables on Flirtini after finishing third to her in the Miss Andretti Stakes (1100m).

Essential Spice is rated a $9.50 chance with the TAB, firming from her opening quote of $12.

Flirtini, who holds $2.65 favouritism, rises 2kg to 60.5kg in the Scenic Blast Stakes.

The Simon Miller-trained mare has drawn barrier ten for William Pike. Joe Azzopardi retains the mount on Essential Spice. Carrying 3kg less than Flirtini, she jumps from barrier two.

“I think she is a big price and will be right in it,” Pearce said.

“The favourite has some weight and a wide barrier to overcome.

“If she (Essential Spice) gets the right run she has a 200m kick and will be right there.”

Julio Santarelli