Trainer Jason Warren has been moved to compare untapped three-year-old Puritan to his Group One winner Bel Sprinter.
Such is his opinion of the horse, Puritan will take his place in Saturday’s Group Two Danehill Stakes (1200m) at Flemington after winning his only start on Pakenham’s synthetic track.
The style of Puritan’s last-to-first win in the maiden race reminded Warren of the now-retired Bel Sprinter, a $1 million earner renowned for his powerful turn of speed.
“He’s the closest thing I’ve had to Bel Sprinter since I had him,” Warren said of Puritan.
“I think he’s well and truly up to a race like this on Saturday.”
Puritan trialled twice at Cranbourne leading up to his debut and Warren suspected then that the son of Beneteau was a stakes-class horse.
“Then when he went to Pakenham at his first start he was still very new to it all and was on and off the bridle,” Warren said.
“But when (jockey) Jake (Noonan) got him to the outside and he asked him for an effort, you got to see how good a turn of foot he’s got.”
The Danehill Stakes field is headed by $3.40 favourite Ready For Victory who was a luckless first-up second in the McNeil Stakes.
The promising Black Vanquish resumes and has firmed to $5.50 while Puritan shares the fourth line of betting at $8.50.
“I would be very surprised if he’s not in the finish,” Warren said.
“He’s trained on well and his work on Tuesday was first class.
“I think he’s the real deal and I’m really looking forward to Saturday.”