JJ Atkins Stakes option open for Sheeza Belter

WA-owned filly Sheeza Belter could still run in next month’s Group 1 J.J. Atkins Stakes (1600m) at Eagle Farm, following her win in Saturday’s Group 2 BRC Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) at Eagle Farm.

The Gold Standard filly, ridden to victory by William Pike, unleashed a powerful finishing burst to beat Swiss Exile by a length and take her earnings beyond the $800,000 barrier.

Speaking to the media immediately after the race, co-trainer Paul Snowden indicated the filly could head to the paddock.

However, fellow co-trainer Paul Snowden said a final decision on whether Sheeza Belter would run in the $1 million J.J. Atkins would be made mid-week.

“It was a pretty tough run for her,” Snowden told TABradio.

“She’s a great eater and she’s very fresh this morning.

“I never thought I’d even contemplate running her over a mile, but you just have to have an open mind.

“We’ve got until Wednesday to make up our mind on whether we run her or not.

“To be fair to her, I’ll just see how she is every day between now and then.”

Sheeza Belter was unplaced at her first start for the Snowden team, when beaten more than eight lengths by stablemate Paris Dior in the Percy Sykes Stakes (1200m).

She then finished third in the Group 3 Ken Russell Stakes (1200m) at the Gold Coast earlier this month.

Snowden said he felt the filly could be a major player in three-year-old fillies races later this year, including the Group 1 Flight Stakes (1600m) at Randwick.

“There’s a heap of races open for her, especially now knowing that she gets 1400 metres,” he said.

“She could even get mile.

“That’s why there’s no pressure to run her Saturday week.”

The victory took Sheeza Belter’s record to three wins from six starts, with her other two successes coming at Ascot on New Year’s Day and the Magic Millions Classic at Pinjarra.

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