|Black Heart Bart wound back the clock and made it a triumphant return from retirement with a stunning win in today’s Group One $750,000 Underwood Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield.|
At his third run since a surprise comeback to the track, Black Heart Bart showed he still has a strong thirst for racing and in a driving finish the 100/1 elect held out the warm favourite Homesman strongly.
Today’s Group One victory continued the dream start for the new Warrnambool training base for master Perth horseman Lindsey Smith.
Smith was hopeful leading into the Underwood Stakes with the son of Blackfriars after an eighth in the Memsie Stakes and an eleventh to Begood Toya Mother in the Sir Rupert Clarke starts eight days ago.
“He’s obviously a grand old horse,” Smith said. “I thought he was in a bit of trouble (for his career) last start but the jockey was very confident that he would run a big race today.”
“We thought getting him to 1800 (would be better) so he wasn’t chasing all the time – it was a good result. It was a bit unexpected I must say.”
“It’s great for the owner who copped a bit of flack and he got his reward today,” Smith added.
It was an emotional win for jockey Brad Rawiller who has ridden Black Heart Bart to many of his biggest wins.
“A master training effort,” Rawiller said of Lindsey Smith’s efforts with the comeback warrior.
“I’ve won a Golden Slipper and a Caulfield Cup and never looked like getting teary and I am nearly in tears,” Rawiller added.
Black Heart Bart, a spritely nine-year-old bred by Scenic Lodge, was a $20,000 buy from the 2012 Magic Millions Perth Yearling Sale for senior part owner Kim Renner from the draft of Lakeside Thoroughbreds.
Now a six time Group One winner, Black Heart Bart has sent his career earnings soaring past $4.46 million.
Today’s victory was the second in the Group One Underwood Stakes for Black Heart Bart after winning the race in 2016. He also won a Memsie Stakes and The Goodwood earlier that year and a CF Orr Stakes and Futurity Stakes in the autumn of 2017.
Black Heart Bart is one of three winners produced by the four time metropolitan winning At Talaq mare Sister Theresa – a half sister to multiple Group One winner Savannah Success, the dam of Cox Plate winning sire Savabeel.
Rebel Sister, one of Black Heart Bart’s unraced half sisters, is the dam of $900,000 earner Rebel King and his stakes performed brother Rebel Knight and stakes winning half brother Rebelson.
Meanwhile, Alligator Blood extended his unbeaten run to five with an impressive win in the Group Three Caulfield Guineas Prelude (1400m) earlier on the card.
Prepared by Sunshine Coast based horseman David Vandyke, Alligator Blood will be out to emulate his sire All Too Hard in the Caulfield Guineas in just under two weeks.
Alligator Blood, who was having his first start racing in the Melbourne direction, was a $55,000 buy from last year’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale when offered by breeder, Baramul Stud.
Winner: Black Heart Bart
Breeding: Blackfriars-Sister Theresa (At Talaq)
Race: MRC Underwood Stakes G1 (1800m)
Sold for: $20,000
Sale: 2012 Magic Millions Perth Yearling Sale
Vendor: Lakeside Thoroughbreds
Buyer: Kim Renner
Owner(s): K Renner, C Delacy, Mrs D Richardson, A Psaltis & I Mccarthy
Trainer: Lindsey Smith (Warrnambool)