It may have lost Group Two status as well as having its purse reduced but Rob Heathcote says a rescheduled sprint at Eagle Farm on Wednesday remains an important part of Buffering’s winter campaign.
Buffering, Adebisi and former international star Scenic Blast are part of a six-horse field lining up in the race called the Coca-Cola Amatil Weight For Age.
Heathcote also accepted with Captain Clayton but concedes the five-year-old is not in the same class as Buffering and his rivals.
The weight-for-age race was added to the midweek program after the Group Two Victory Stakes meeting at Eagle Farm last Saturday was washed out.
The Group Three Gunsynd Classic (1600m) also was added.
The Victory Stakes had a prizemoney purse of $175,000 but its replacement race is worth $100,000 in stakes money.
“The prizemoney doesn’t worry me that much but I am a little disappointed the race has lost its Group Two status,” Heathcote said.
Buffering is the $4.60 favourite in fixed betting with TAB Sportsbet for the Group One BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben on Saturday week after trainer Joe Pride ruled out a Brisbane trip for star sprinter Rain Affair.
“It’s good news Rain Affair isn’t coming,” Heathcote said.
“Buffering deserves to win a Group One race as he’s ticked all the boxes.”
Heathcote remains confident Buffering can make a successful return to his home state following his outstanding form during the Melbourne autumn carnival.
The son of Mossman hasn’t raced since finishing third to Foxwedge in the Group One William Reid Stakes at Moonee Valley on March 23 which followed his second to Hay List in the Group One Newmarket Handicap and third to Black Caviar in the Group One Lightning Stakes, both at Flemington.
“He should be very hard to beat tomorrow after his efforts behind the world’s top two sprinters in Melbourne,” Heathcote said.
Heathcote has retained Jim Byrne to ride Buffering but hasn’t finalised a rider for the BTC Cup.
Nash Rawiller has been offered the mount but the champion Sydney hoop could be required for the Gai Waterhouse-trained Nobby Snip if the Group One Galaxy runner-up heads north.
Heathcote also has strong claims with Trump and Vacallo in the Gunsynd Classic.
“I’m very happy with both of them,” Heathcote said.
“This run will tell me more about which way we’ll go with Trump.”
Trump came from well back on a slow track to finish a close second to Morning Captain in the Listed Queensland Day Plate (1350m) at Doomben on April 14.