Baker stable may wait on Warrior

A win by hotpot Horse Warrior at Pukekohe yesterday was not enough to guarantee a late payment for the Group I Oaks Stud Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes on Saturday week.

Happy Warrior fulfilled expectations when winning the Malcolm Wrigley Insurance Services 1200 at cramped odds, but co-trainer Murray Baker hasn’t automatically decided on a spot in the 1400-metre Awapuni feature for the son of Keeper.

“He’s still a bit green and it might be better to wait for the 1600 metres at Ellerslie on April 13,” said Baker. “I haven’t made my mind up for sure yet, but that would give us a bit more time to work on him.”

The Listed $50,000 Windsor Park Champagne Stakes is a race Baker used three years ago to successfully top off the juvenile campaign of Lion Tamer, the ill-fated galloper who went on to race away with the Group I Victoria Derby later in the year.

Should Horse Warrior’s Hong Kong owners want to start their horse in the Sires’ Produce Stakes it will require a late entry fee ($1437.50) and a late entry acceptance ($3880).

A son of Keeper and the three-race winning stakes-placed mare Inshelucky, Horse Warrior is held in high regard by Baker. He won a trial at Paeroa before finishing second to Constellation, another of the Baker — Andrew Forsman team, at Ellerslie.

If Baker doesn’t change his mind over a Champagne Stakes start for Horse Warrior, the stable’s hopes in the Oaks Stud Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes will rest on Constellation, who was a trials winner before finishing third on debut.

Constellation will be attempting to be a Group One winning two-year-old just like her sire, Fully Fledged, who won the Gr.1 Ford Diamond Stakes at Ellerslie from the Baker stable.

The Baker — Forsman stable will have its attention switching between Awapuni and Rosehill on Saturday week as stable star (It’s A) Dundeel will be starting in the Group I $A500,000 M.J. Bale Rosehill Guineas, the 2000-metre event in which the Kiwi three-year-olds Ocean Park and Silent Achiever finished second and third respectively last year behind Laser Hawk.

Jimmy Choux won the Rosehill Guineas in 2011 and other New Zealand gallopers to triumph over the years include Surfers Paradise and Isle Of Man.

Meantime, Baker and Forsman are concentrating on Saturday’s Tauranga meeting, at which the stable representatives include Diademe (Group II Windsor Park Stud Japan Trophy), Usainity and Neo.

Baker says Diademe has thrived since her defeat of Final Touch and Fleur de Lune in the Group III Westbury Classic at Ellerslie and Matt Cameron will take over the reins with Opie Bosson required for Sangster in Sydney.

Usainity is a winner of two of his four starts and placed on the other occasions. He could take the step from Saturday’s race to the Group III $70,000 Higgins Manawatu Classic (2000m) a week later.

“With a bit of luck he could be unbeaten,” said Baker. “He could go to Brisbane if he continues to do well.”

Neo is also a possibility to get to Brisbane, where he is owned. He resumes in the third event at Tauranga and impressed Bosson when winning a recent trial.