With a number of scratchings as a result of the extreme weather forecast and rain due to hit the state, our Victorian runners are primed to make their mark this weekend.
Kicking off Saturday’s racing in a far sunnier Queensland is Master Zephyr, who is in good order ahead of his 2200m Open Handicap at Doomben. He has continued to please the Haydon Racing team, maintaining his condition and fitness leading into the race. From the good draw they hope to see him settle just behind the speed and manage a clear run home. A strong each-way chance we hope to see him put his best hoof forward.
Also for the Haydon Racing stable, Savvy Acquisition heads to the Gold Coast and is engaged in the 1800m Maiden. Having managed to secure Glen Colless to ride, they hope to see the horse settle in a nice position mid-field or better and find clear room for running. Savvy Acquisition is a horse that takes some time to wind up down the straight, so we hope to see him in a position ready to make his move – and finally crack his maiden!
Further south in Victoria, Romancer joins a strong line up in the 1400m Open Handicap, taking on the likes of mudlark Jungle Edge. Dragged out of his comfort zone last start in the way the race was run, trainer Grahame Begg is this start looking to have him ridden back off the speed and let the race unfold in front of him. The wide gate makes things a little awkward, however, the heavy rain predicted overnight certainly won’t do Romancer any harm. He should perform well under the low weight and will relish in the soft track.
Below: Romancer winning at Flemington.
Chelkar also heads to Flemington for the 2000m BM78, dropping back in distance for Archie Alexander. Drawing well, he jumps from barrier 4 of 16, and Archie would like to see him push forward to be within the first five runners. Declan Bates takes the ride and after having galloped him in blinkers, is looking forward to riding a sharper horse this time out. Chelkar is a horse that can hold a solid galloping tempo, however, has limited sit and sprint capabilities. We hope the race pans out in his favour and he can work home strongly to the line.
Another OTI runner stepping out Flemington is Angelic Spirit in the Mares BM84 over 1400m. The track rating may pose an issue, having struggled with the heavier going at Caulfield previously this preparation. Linda Meech who has won on Angelic and will take the reins and look to rate her kindly out in front, before taking off for home. Reports from the Busuttin stable is that she has enjoyed her freshen up between runs and looks primed for the run.
Below: Linda Meech and Angelic Spirit.
In NSW, Kellstorm travels to Newcastle for the Freedman racing team where he will step out in the BM70 over 2950m. A true staying test, Kellstorm takes a drop-in class to become the top weight and ridden by apprentice Louise Day, who claims 3kgs. Carrying 60kgs, we hope to see him figuring in the finish in the Hunter Stayers Cup.
Rounding out the weekend is our 7-length maiden winner Tigre Royale stepping up in class to take on the 2400m BM64 for Archie Alexander. The significant rainfall due to hit the state over the weekend may influence his running in the race, however, at this stage, he is set to make his mark for Declan Bates.
We wish all of their connections the best of luck this weekend and happy racing!