Robert Heathcote knows Punta Norte has the physical ability to be a stakes winner but the trainer admits he’s not so sure about the four-year-old’s mental state.
Punta Norte, who has mixed some brilliant performances with some equally awful runs, gets his black-type chance in Saturday’s Listed Tattersall’s Members Cup (1600m) at Doomben.
“He was very good first-up and then he was too fresh and wanted to over-race second-up,” Heathcote said.
“On pure ability and his work on Tuesday morning he could win on Saturday. But he is a head case and who knows?
“For all that, one day the penny will drop and you will see a very good horse.”
Punta Norte has won five of his 17 starts but there is little doubt if his racing manners were better, he would have a greater winning record.
He was a good third first-up over 1110m at Doomben five weeks ago and then at his last start was beaten two lengths when midfield behind Mischievous Devil over 1350m at Doomben on February 13.
Right Or Wrong is the TAB’s $1.60 favourite for the Members Cup with Punt Norte on the third line of TAB betting on Friday at $6.50 behind the Peter and Paul Snowden-trained Snippets Land at $6.
Heathcote will also have Bewhatyouwannabe ($11) in the Member’s Cup.
“He tries and hasn’t had much luck at all. He is nicely drawn in three this time,” Heathcote said.
The trainer is also looking forward to the debut of promising youngster Capo Di Tutti in the Winning Edge Presentation 2YO (1050m).
Capo Di Tutti was an eye-catching 4-1/2 length winner of a Deagon barrier trial on February 16, running a slick 45.41 seconds for 850m.
By Written Tycoon out of Queenie, the gelding is a brother to the now Hong Kong-based Trump who was trained by Heathcote to win the 2012 Group Three Gunsynd Classic.
“Trump was Written Tycoon’s first black-type winner and, like Trump, I think Capo Di Tutti will need a bit more ground.
“But he trialled well and he is promising,” Heathcote said.