Usain Bowler has given trainer John Sadler an early 65th birthday present with a late-surge victory at The Valley.
After taking over the training of Usain Bowler from the disqualified Robert Smerdon, Sadler felt Usain Bowler was capable of winning a good race up to 1600m.
That was until an operation for a throat complaint which has since kept Usain Bowler to sprinting.
Ridden by Mark Zahra, Usain Bowler was sent off the $2.90 favourite in Saturday’s Four’N Twenty Handicap and defeated Beautiful Flyer ($17) by a head with Tavisan ($4.40) a half-head away third.
“He’s still not 100 per cent,” Sadler said.
“I remember Tommy Hughes saying Umatilla would win up to a mile and a half if he was able to breathe.
“This horse would run a good mile no worries, but not with the way his wind is.
“Seven furlongs (1400m) would be as far he gets.”
Sadler said he would now look for a suitable benchmark 90 race and then if his form warrants consider aiming the gelding at the Group One Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield in September.