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Lucky Secret Set For Winterbottom Stakes Showdown

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Prolific winner Lucky Secret will make a hit-and-run visit to Perth for Saturday’s Group Two Winterbottom Stakes 2009.

The brilliant sprinter is booked to fly out of Melbourne on Friday afternoon after the decision to run him in the 1200m feature.

“I’ll take him to Sandown for a gallop on Tuesday morning,” trainer Tony Vasil said.

Vasil had been sceptical about taking Lucky Secret, who has been plagued with joint problems, to Perth as he feared the Ascot track would be too firm for him.

“I have been assured by racing officials in Perth that the track will not be too hard for him,” Vasil said.

“It has been raining there and they tell me the track has a nice covering of grass.”

Lucky Secret, a six-year-old by Rubiton, has won 14 of his 23 starts and almost $1 million prizemoney.

The winner of the Listed 2009 Kevin Heffernan Stakes (1300m) at Sandown last Saturday week, Lucky Secret is in fine fettle at the moment with Vasil reporting he had pulled up well after the weight-for-age event.

“He’s in great order. I rode him myself on Saturday morning,” Vasil said.

“After Perth I’m looking at taking him to New Zealand for two races in January, the Railway and the Telegraph.”

The $NZ200,000 Railway Stakes (1200m) is at Ellerslie on January 1, while the $NZ1 million Telegraph Hcp (1200m) is held at Trentham on January 23.

Lucky Secret, a winner three times at Group Two level, set a new 1000 metre course record when he ran 55.97 at Caulfield in the Schillaci Stakes in October.

The gelding is yet to win at Group One level but was beaten just a short-head by Swiss Ace in the Oakleigh Plate (1100m) on his home track last February.

The Winterbottom Stakes field will be led out by last year’s winner Takeover Target.

The champion international sprinter suffered a career ending injury in England earlier this year.

He returned home after an operation and thousands of fans turned out to farewell Takeover Target at Randwick earlier this month.

He and trainer Joe Janiak have received invitations from all over the country from clubs wishing to give Takeover Target an official send-off.

Article by Mark Ryan Aapracing

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