Messara plans Salinger assault with Battlefield
Trainer Paul Messara is weighing up the options for striking chestnut Battlefield ahead of his assault on the Salinger Stakes at Flemington in October.
Battlefield underlined his spring credentials with a barnstorming last-start victory in the Listed Ramornie Handicap (1200m) at Grafton on July 15.
The victory was his fourth in a row and second consecutive stakes win after he claimed the Ascot Handicap at Eagle Farm 11 days earlier.
The distinctive gelding resembles a palomino with his chestnut coat and pale mane and tail.
Messara has yet to decide whether Battlefield will run before the Salinger.
"He’s definitely going down to the Salinger but he might have a start before that. I’ll wait and see," Messara said.
"He’ll be trained at home until he’s ready for the races and has done really well for us."
Battlefield is raced by a syndicate headed by Messara’s father John, the principal of Arrowfield Stud at Scone in the NSW Hunter Valley.
The Ramornie win showed Paul Messara Battlefield had the credentials to tackle the better races.
"Not many horses have that type of acceleration," Messara said.
"He drew awkwardly (barrier 11) and didn’t have the easiest of runs but he still won and it was the type of performance which really showed me he is a proper Group horse.
"Taking horses for these big races in Flemington in spring is what it’s all about for a trainer and the whole team are very excited we have a horse who will be very competitive there."
The four-year-old has had seven starts for five wins between 1000 and 1200 metres.
The Group Two Salinger Stakes (1200m) is on October 31.
By Russell Jackson