Stamping his claims as a serious racing contender over an impressive debut campaign through spring, trainer Paul Messara has revealed he will keep talented three-year-old Panzer Division to sprint races over the 2015 Autumn Racing Carnival, highlighted events such as the Group 1 Canterbury Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on March 7th as serious possibilities.
Securing two wins and an agonizingly-close second place finish over his five competitive starts so far, Panzer Division has not been seen at the races since finishing a credible fifth in the Group 1 Spring Champion Stakes on October 11th; a race which also figured as his competitive debut at 2000m.
Having reportedly taken well to his time in the paddock, Messara said he has been thrilled with the form and class displayed by the son of Redoute’s Choice since returning to work and is confident he will be most effective over short distances through the 2015 Autumn Carnival, having not been completely sold by the three-year-old’s run over 2000m.
“It is easy to look back now and say it probably wasn’t the right decision but we had to find out,” Messara told Racing Network.
“But we have learned from that and I think I’ll keep him to a sprinter this time in.
“I think 1400m is probably as far as he wants; a front-running blinkers on type of 1400m horse.”
Comfortably beating a classy field to the line by close to four lengths on debut on July 19th, Panzer Division was unlucky to be hampered late when finishing second by a short nose to stable mate Scissor Kick in the Group 3 Up And Coming Stakes (1300m) at Randwick on August 23rd.
Responding in the best way possible in taking out the Group 3 Ming Dynasty Quality (1400m) on September 6th, Panzer Division laid a particularly great account for himself when finishing fifth amongst open company in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) on September 20th, in what also figured as his only other start prior to the Spring Champion Stakes.
Yet to confirm a specific path through the 2015 Autumn Carnival, Messara said both Panzer Division and Scissor Kick will return to competition in the Group 3 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on February 7th.
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