As a Group One winner Lasqueti Spirit is the highest-rated horse in the Rowley Mile at Hawkesbury but her trainer Lee Curtis is not expecting too much from the mare as she begins her spring campaign.
She is a $35 chance in Thursday’s 10-horse Rowley Mile field with Arbeitsam the odds-on favourite based on his three wins from his past four starts.
Lasqueti Spirit has only won one race but it was one that counted more than most.
Last November she led a field of higher qualified fillies a merry dance to claim the VRC Oaks (2500m) at $101.
Her best performances since have been her second to Winx in the Chipping Norton Stakes and third in the Australian Oaks won by Bonneval.
She has had two barrier trials leading into her return and Curtis admits they were not really what he wanted to see with Lasqueti Spirit among the tailenders in both.
“Her first trial was terrible and her second was a bit better,” Curtis said.
“But I’m so happy with her and how she is in herself. She is a happy horse so hopefully she brings it to the races.
“I wouldn’t expect to see too much from her until she gets up over ground and the aim is to run her in the Chelmsford Stakes and the Kingston Town on the way to the Metropolitan and St Leger.
“Those last two races will give us a better guide how she’s going and whether she goes back to Melbourne.”
Lasqueti Spirit’s Oaks-winning jockey Brenton Avdulla is back aboard on Thursday and Curtis will rely on his feedback.
Tim Clark, who rode the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained Arbeitsam to a Rosehill win on July 29 renews his association with the four-year-old at Hawkesbury.