Bel Esprit will forever be remembered as the sire of Black Caviar – and rightly so – but to gauge his true measure as a stallion, you also need to take in the likes of 7YO sprinter, Esprit de Bullet (below).
What a campaigner! At Morphettville on Saturday the John Hyam trained veteran recorded his 10th career victory with a thriller – as $2.40 favourite – over 1050m, his second win over the course and distance on the trot.
Consider this horse’s career: he won on debut on Boxing Day 2008, had another start in January and was then out for 46 weeks. He returned with two in a row, a seventh and a fourth before being tipped out for four months. Only coming back for a single appearance in June 2010, he ran third at the ‘ville, beaten a half length.
Again out for four months, he won at Bendigo, won at Moonee Valley, finished midfield in a Group race at Flemington and then found more trouble than Flash Gordon at Caulfield, but still finished just two lengths off the pace.
Then he was missing for a year, followed by a fifth at Flemington – beaten a length – and fourth at Morphettville.
Another 35 week spell followed by three city wins and a third from five starts, before his latest stint which has produced – after an albeit slow start for him – a second and two wins at his last three.
What a terrific horse!Esprit de Bullet was one leg of another Bel Esprit troika on Saturday with wins also recorded by 3YO, Twin Star Rocket and the speedy Ski Esprit.