Smart sprinter Norwegian Bliss has been set for a first-up tilt at the Grafton carnival.
Norwegian Bliss will look to build on her outstanding fresh record when she chases a maiden black-type success in the Listed Ramornie Handicap at Grafton.
The bonny mare has won three of her four first-up runs and heads to Wednesday’s sprint off the back of two solid barrier trials.
“It’s an ideal race for her, 1200 metres, and there’s not much around for her at this time of year,” trainer Nathan Doyle said.
Norwegian Bliss has an outstanding career strikerate with seven wins from 10 starts, her first defeat coming late last spring when she finished runner-up to Crosshaven in the Group 3 Kevin Heffernan Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield.
She had a short break before returning for the autumn and in hindsight, Doyle said it probably wasn’t long enough.
The mare performed well below her best in two runs, finishing down the track in a brace of Group races before Doyle pulled the pin and tipped her back out.
“She didn’t come up last preparation, so we elected to give her a good break and start again,” he said.
“She had that trip to Melbourne and only had ten days off after that Melbourne run until she came back into work.
“It was her first trip away and it probably just took a bit more out of her than we thought so we pressed the reset button and she seems to be going well.
“She looks well within herself so hopefully she can bounce back to her best.”
There are 26 nominations for the Ramornie Handicap (1200m) headed by last year’s winner Ranges, who comes into the race off a last start fourth in the W J Healy Stakes in Brisbane, along with his Peter and Paul Snowden-trained stablemates Devil’s Throat and Billiondollarbaby.
James Cummings has entered Zethus while popular Northern Rivers sprinter Far Too Easy is also in the mix for Murwillumbah trainer David Mccolm .
– RAS NewsWire