Butt sets sights on Jewels
By Adam Hamilton
TIM Butt wants to be part of the Harness Jewels.
Now it’s down to how it makes it happen with his emerging four-year-old trotting mare Sassy Pants.
Amazingly, connections of six trotters have expressed interest in the Aussie invite for this category.
Butt realises lightly-raced and speedy Victorian mare Amour De Frere – trained by Anton Golino and owned by Pat Driscoll’s Yabby Dams – is probably the front-runner right now.
Sassy Pants has always shown talent, but manners have been the issue.
She looks more mature an reliable this campaign as evidenced by her four starts netting three wins and a third.
The latest win came an Group 3 level in the 4YO Foundation Final in a 1min59sec mile rate for 2300m at Menangle last Saturday.
“She’s good enough to take on ability. I think she’d run a 1min54sec mile at Menangle,” Butt said.
“She’s learning all the time, but we realise it’s not an easy category to get the Aussie invite, so we have map a plan to impress.”
That plans centres around winning – and hopefully running slick time – in the Group 2 La Coocaracha for trotting mares at Menangle on May 5.
“I can’t see them issuing an invite before the La Coocaracha is run, so that’s the race this mare can prove to us and hopefully the Jewels selectors she deserves a shot at it,” Butt said.
In other stable news, Butt said stable stars My Field Marshal and Let It Ride were “about two to three weeks away” from returning to work.
“They’ll come back and go through the Menangle free-for-alls. If they’re going well enough at the time, we’ll take them to the Queensland Carnival,” he said.
“I’m planning to take a team up their for a few weeks, Cheesy Fingers for the Oaks and Prestonpans, who is a bit raw, but has plenty of natural ability. He’d be good for the four-year-old races up there.”