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Lasqueti Spirit to take on big guns again

Lasqueti Spirit didnt trouble Winx or Hartnell last time they met and her trainer Lee Curtis doesn’t expect her to give them too much grief in the Chipping Norton Stakes.

What Curtis wants is for the VRC Oaks winner to keep showing him she is on target for the longer races to come after she runs in Saturday’s 1600m Group One feature at Randwick.

Winx is Australia’s champion and the best horse on turf in the world and Hartnell is the country’s second highest-ranked horse for 2016.

They are at $1.10 and $8 respectively in Sydney’s first Group One race of the year after Winx beat Hartnell in the Apollo Stakes in which Lasqueti Spirit finished 10 lengths from the winner.

Although it is a tough assignment taking on the weight-for-age stars early in the autumn, Curtis believes it’s a better path than pitting Lasqueti Spirit against the speedy fillies in her own age group.

“The Chipping Norton is another stepping stone to the BMW and the Australian Oaks,” Curtis said.

“It would be silly to say she can trouble Winx or Hartnell but if she can finish within six lengths she is going the right way.

“She’s come through the Apollo well. She had a bit of a hard run because she was a bit slow out and then was wide all the way.

“She only runs at one pace. If she had a turn of foot she would be a champion.”

Lasqueti Spirit won the Group One Oaks by leading all the way at that one pace and defying efforts to run her down.

She is at $101 in early Chipping Norton markets with Winx’s stablemate Endless Drama at $15 and He’s Our Rokkii at $26 the only horses apart from the leading pair under $51.

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