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Up And Comer To Embrace Elder Challenge

By Ray Hickson

Trainers Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott have the view there’s no time like the present to test promising colt Embracer against older horses at Warwick Farm on Wednesday.

The three-year-old will be easily the least experienced runner in the ANZ Bloodstock News Handicap (1200m) but Bott says while he’s been thrown in the deep end somewhat Embracer is a horse the stable has plenty of time for.

“This time of year they've probably got to start taking (older horses) on,’’ he said.

“There weren't a lot of options for him against his own age but he has to take that step at some point. He's coming off a nice win so now is the right opportunity.’’

Embracer has started a short priced favourite in all three starts and will again be the popular elect on Wednesday, a warm $2 with TAB, but at this point the punters are on the wrong side of the leger.

The colt was beaten on debut at Warwick Farm at $2.40 then again at Wyong as a $1.09 elect before the blinkers were fitted and he romped away two weeks ago at the Farm as a $1.85 favourite.

“The blinkers probably helped him focus that bit more,’’ Bott said.

Embracer wins at Warwick Farm on May 29

“Stepping him straight to 1350m second-up, he might have felt that first-up run so maybe keeping him to the shorter sprints is the right move.

“He still ran well at Wyong but going around at the price he did it makes it hard when they get defeated.’’

Josh Parr, who rode Embracer at his first two starts, is back on board for start four and Bott said the horse is starting to furnish and work out what he’s there for.

“We've kept the blinkers on to keep him focused because he has to take on the more seasoned horses,’’ he said.

The blinkers will come off Light Exceed in the TAB Rewards Plate (1100m) for her first run since December and Bott said the filly has grown up a bit in that time.

She was placed at Gosford on debut but failed when out to 1400m before a spell.

“She's returned a bit stronger, we've had trouble keeping the weight on her the last couple of preps,’’ Bott said.

“She's nice and forward for the run and it looks a nice race for her to kick off in.’’

And stablemate Mini Boom has some compelling form lines around her first outing from Gosford last month where she was a close third behind Soul Soldier and Saturday’s impressive Randwick winner Catwalk.

“It was an excellent run there, should appreciate the 1200m and she is an improver for sure,’’ Bott said.

Light Exceed was a $6 chance on Tuesday while Mini Boom was hard in the TAB market at $3 in the Hyland Race Colours Plate (1200m).

All the fields, form and replays for Wednesday's Warwick Farm meeting

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