Three-time Group 1 winner Jarick Bale is a stayer in every sense of the word.
On Saturday night at The Meadows, the reigning Victorian Stayer of the Year will celebrate his 100th start milestone; however, there’s every chance a kennelmate will crash the veteran superstar’s party.
Jarick Bale, trained by 2022 Melbourne Cup winner Mark Delbridge and wife Lisa, has won 36 of his 99 starts – an impressive 36 percent strike rate – however Saturday night’s 525m assignment is well short of his preferred journeys.
Just on one year ago, Jarick Bale was runner-up in the G1 Sandown Cup (715m), while his three G1 victories have been back-to-back Sale Cup successes over 650m and the 600m Rookie Rebel.
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The son of The Meadows 525m record holder Allen Deed is searching for his first win in 2023 – albeit he’s only started eight times – his most recent victory being his second Sale Cup triumph on Boxing Day.
Jarick Bale (box 7) resumes from a month on the sidelines in race 8 (8.57pm), with Sportsbet rating him a $14 outsider.
Kennelmate Elite Alex (box 2), a smart 29.91sec winner at The Meadows last weekend, leading home a Delbridge treble and seven winners for the day, is $1.90 favourite.
“Realistically, Jarick Bale probably can’t win,” Delbridge conceded.
“It’s not the distance he wants.
“I would’ve preferred running him over 600m, but I had to scratch him four weeks ago because he was a bit sore in his stopper bone.
WATCH: JARICK BALE (B7), which will reach the 100-start milestone at The Meadows on Saturday night, celebrated back-to-back victories in the G1 Sale Cup on Boxing Day.
“As long as he runs well, I’ll take him up to Brisbane next Thursday for the heats of the Carnival Chase (600m), along with Valor Bale, Ailee Bale and Zoha Bale. I would’ve been taking Yachi Bale too, but he has a few niggling injuries.
“Jarick Bale is going to be underdone on Saturday and probably next Thursday as well and he’s not a trial dog, so it’s hard to know how he’s going.
“His racing days are pretty close to being numbered, but I’d like to try and win a few more races with him.”
Delbridge said Saturday’s FFA favourite Elite Alex, winner of five from 11 at The Meadows with a sizzling PB of 29.73sec, is also heading to Queensland next week.
“He’ll run in either the (G2) Flying Amy heats or a (G1) Brisbane Cup prelude,” Delbridge said.
“His chances on Saturday depend on what he does from box two. He wants box four or five, so he’ll try to push out. As long as he comes out well, he’s probably our best chance of the night.”
Ailee Bale (box 2), another of Delbridge’s Brisbane Carnival aspirants, is $2.90 favourite to return to the winner’s list in Saturday night’s middle distance seventh event after minor placings at six of her last seven starts.
“Ailee Bale is finding it hard to win a race,” Delbridge said.
“I don’t think she’s a genuine 600m dog. When she leads, she goes too hard, but then last week she got held up and was finishing two to the leader’s one.”