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Trainer Tony Pike issues warning about Sacred Star for Stradbroke Handicap

June 3, 2014

SACRED Star was a big firmer in Stradbroke Handicap markets as Kiwi trainer Tony Pike asserted the QTC Cup winner would gobble up the extra distance of Queensland’s richest race.

The visiting gelding is now assured of a start in the big race next Saturday, firming from $21 to $13, after cantering up in the run to put away the QTC Cup (1300m) field.

There had been a huge spruik on the sprinter since he ran down Adebisi in a trial and he lived up to that wrap.

And Pike was quick to deliver some words of warning to rival Stradbroke trainers as he claimed his horse would make further improvements.

‘’He was probably a bit too fresh today and he was much more handy in the run than he normally is,’’ Pike said.

“He is better ridden even more cold than that. There is no doubt he is a better horse coming at them with the last run.

“The 1400m of the Stradbroke is going to be better than the 1300m today.

“And today’s run hopefully takes a bit of that freshness out of him.

“He is a horse that if they go hard in the Stradbroke and he is back midfield, he will be a chance of getting home over them.’’

Pike almost guaranteed a Stradbroke run, providing the gelding pulls up well today, claiming: “That is what we are here for”.

Tim Bell, who enjoyed an extraordinary day of success, is not yet locked in for Sacred Star for the Stradbroke. Bell will be easily able to make the weight for Sacred Star but has a choice to make between it and River Lad.

Pike’s only concern for the Stradbroke is Sacred Star’s habit of losing focus once he thinks he has his rivals beaten.

“He has done that to us a few times before, just cruised up to them and looked around a bit,’’ Pike said.

“If he gets there too soon he will tend to think his job is done and knock off.’’

Story and photo from Rafflesracing.com