By Brad Gray
Ballistica set tongues wagging after her trials and although she debuts with plenty of anticipation, Bjorn Baker is keeping a cool head before Saturday's $250,000 Inglis Classic (1200m) at Warwick Farm.
“It’s hard to go from two nice trials into a good race, and in a big field. She’ll have to do everything right but she has drawn to get a lovely run. (Jason) Collett has ridden her a few times in track work and in her trials so he has a feel for her,” Baker said.
“It’s hard to be too confident going into this kind of race though. We won’t drive her mad (from barrier 3). We’ll just put her where she is comfortable and Collett will ride her that way.”
The Smart Missile filly, who will be joined in the race by stablemate Ta Chanson, also raced by Triple Crown, showed brilliant acceleration in a recent Gosford trial win.
Ballistica's latest trial at Gosford - Jan 31
“It was a good turn of foot and I had the second horse there (Elenara) as well who I have got a bit of time for. She is in good order. We had a good look at her this morning and we’re happy with her going in.”
Baker has assembled a strong team to tackle Saturday’s meeting on his home patch which includes Goodfella in the $150,000 G3 Aquis Farm Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m).
“Goodfella’s run in the Magic Millions was top class. He is still underrated. He has drawn a bit awkwardly but he is jumping a bit better and if he puts himself into the race at any stage he’ll be strong at the finish,” Baker said.
“That’s a bit of a question mark (dropping back to 1200m) but he did win the Brian Crowley over 1200m albeit with a bit of cut in the track back from 1400m. It’s already worked this season and can work again.”
Sprinting mares Egyptian Symbol and Bonny O’reilly will clash in the $200,000 G2 Yarraman Park Breeders Classic (1200m) and like the market, with TAB Fixed Odds rating them $3.30 and $3.70 respectively, Baker has trouble splitting them.
“They are both in really good order. Egyptian Symbol has got the form on the board this time in. It was a good run at Magic Millions and her win prior to that was excellent,” Baker said before recalling that Egyptian Symbol ran second to In Her Time in the race last year.
“Bonny O’reilly goes really well fresh, is in good order and is hard to knock. She is a winner, puts herself there and the 1200m at Warwick Farm will really suit her.”
Meanwhile, Baker suggested that new stable recruit Show A Star had improved again off his last start Rosehill Gardens victory.
“He is well set up after a couple of good runs this time in. Third up on his home track out to a mile suits him. We have had a good look at him this morning as well and we’re really happy with how he looks,” he said.