From Bjorn Baker
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 5, Ortensia Stakes) He’s been a really good horse and he was super first-up (winning the Hawkesbury Gold Rush), there’s no doubt about it. I think having a good break helped him revitalise. It was a big win and we’re obviously really happy with it, and I’d love to see him back it up. I haven’t completely given up on him getting 1200m. I know it’s strange to say. I’d love to see him go well then we will think about some options going forward. There’s no doubt he’s got plenty of ability and Rachel (King) has a good record on him. It’s definitely not straightforward but he’s an exciting horse to have and exciting to watch.
Horse: Bring The Ransom
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 9, Dark Jewel Classic) Bring The Ransom is back to defend the Group 3 Dark Jewel Classic and she’s going better than her form reads. She finished midfield in the Group 3 Hawkesbury Crown three weeks ago and she can react positively to racing in the blinkers for the first time. I think she is going better than ever and her runs have been good without a whole heap of luck. She’s got a good gate (2) and Scone definitely suits her. She’s never had blinkers on in all her time racing so it’s something of interest and we’ll see how we go. She’s galloped in them and we’ve been happy.
Horse: Miss Jay Fox
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 10, Muswellbrook Ford BM 78 Hcp) Miss Jay Fox is backing up from a last start win over 1000m at Kensington on ANZAC day. She’ll get a good gun run but she probably needs all the favours. She generally gets better with a run or two so hopefully she can run well again.
From John O’Shea
Horse: Waihaha Falls
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 8, Luskin Star Stakes) A last-start runner-up in the Group 3 Hall Mark Stakes, Waihaha Falls will have the services of Chad Schofield and will jump from barrier 14. He is probably better getting his toe in, but he is just in such great form. His two runs this time in have been fantastic and the other day I thought Tommy (Marquand) made a blue not getting on the back of the favourite (Vilana) at the half mile when he was three-wide. He just had too much to do but he was good late. He steps up to 1300m on Saturday. I think his perfect trip is 1400m. If he can win this and break into a Stradbroke it would be a good scenario. I think that’s a perfect race for him and he is probably second-tier handicap level where he gets down in the weights with a fast-run race and a long run in.
From Brett Cavanough
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 2, Highway Hcp) Sungblue steps to the mile in the TAB Highway after a solid 2nd at Newcastle just over a week ago. Jean (Van Overmeire) thought he could have went back a touch, I had him earmarked as a horse that has a high cruising speed and couldn’t run a sectional. But the sectionals that came out of the Newcastle run were good and you can only read what’s in front of you. On the quick back-up up to the mile, I wouldn’t be surprised if he grabs hold and is in the second or third pair.
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 4, Yarraman Park BM72 Hcp) First-up he was solid, he went to Brisbane and he sat three deep and nothing made ground all day. He’s drawn wide (gate 16), big weight (60kg), (Aaron) Bullock. The handicappers have him earmarked as a good galloper with his weight so I’ll just leave that up to Aaron.
Horse: Once Again My Girl
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 7, Denise’s Joy Stakes) Some of her E-Trakka readings are phenomenal, she’s just very fast. The GPS readings that I’ve got on her are totally different to It’s Me. (It’s Me) used to get back and run unbelievable times late in her races, this filly is the opposite. She can sit up there and hum away and then quicken. Without comparing them this filly is pretty good. But she has been in country grade, we’re playing in the big sandpit this weekend. A well bred, unbeaten filly, we’re getting a bit late in the year and this one fitted in nicely to her program for where she’s at and she’s just got to walk 200 yards and get into them. It’s very positive that she’s playing in her own back yard.
From Clint Lundholm
Horse: Cherry Blue
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 2, Highway Hcp) Cherry Blue, drawn wide (gate 13) off wins in much weaker grade at Gunnedah and Warren, carries 55.5kg for Jason Collett. Cherry Blue keeps raising the bar, up in grade obviously but that’s been the case both wins, so who knows how far he can take it. Always worth a crack in winning form for this level of prizemoney. And knowing he can run a ‘mile’ if he’s up to the grade. No favours the wide draw but we’ll likely come in a few with scratchings.
Horse: Smooth Esprite
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 2, Highway Hcp) Heavy tracks have been against Smooth Esprit but has proven form in tougher grade, the Championships final off the Coonamble qualifier and a Highway winner. But he wants a firmer track if there’s an upgrade. Normally we wouldn’t have run on the heavy in the final, only for making it into a big race and the level of prizemoney. Out to the ’mile’ suits, closed strongly at 1400m, fitter and we did strike a real smart one (Bianco Vilano). His pattern is to get back so we’ll ride him quiet again and hopefully find some short cuts; the big track and straight helps there.
From Luke Pepper
Horse: Opal Ridge
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 8, Luskin Star Stakes) She’s been so versatile her whole career. I was worried about the 59kg in the three-year-old race and back to 1100m (the Denise’s Joy Stakes) and I just thought she was suited more with a nice light weight on her back in the Luskin Star. There’s not much that she can’t do so if there’s a horse I’d be confident about taking on older horses with it’s her. If we are thinking about taking her to Queensland after this race she was going to have to race the older horses anyway so it’ll be a good test for her. She’s spot on and can’t fault her, I’m excited to see her on her home track. It’s a big couple of days for the Scone community and it’d be great to get a winner.
From John Thompson
Horse: Our Uptown Girl
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 1, Kia Ora Woodlands Stud) She’s a lovely filly, she’s showing above average talent and has trialled well. She’s going to be a three-year-old and I was looking for a race to kick her off in. It’s too short for her but we’ll throw her in and see how she goes. Put her in your black book.
Horse: Gracias Amigo
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 6, Scone RSL BM78 Hcp) Grahame Begg sent him up from Melbourne looking for a dry track. He ran well the other day, he just needed the run and that run will get him back to full fitness. The 1700m is perfect and we will be riding him a bit more positively this time.
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 7, Denise’s Joy Stakes) Each preparation she will keep getting better. She was a bit erratic as a young horse but she’s come good. She ran well at the beginning of this prep and has had a freshen up coming back to 1100m. She’s in good order, I think she has a stakes win in her at some stage.
Horse: More Prophets
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 9, Dark Jewel Classic) She just needs to draw well and be three lengths closer in the run, and she’ll finish three lengths closer and you’re in the placings. She keeps running well, she keeps hitting the line, it’s just luck of the draw with the barriers. She’ll be first half of the field from a good draw (gate 6). Reece (Jones) galloped her on Tuesday and he’s riding her so he knows she’s going better than the form says.
From Brad Widdup
Horse: Sneaky Paige
Message: (Saturday, Scone Race 5, Ortensia Stakes) Sneaky Paige has a superior first-up record. There are a few races around for her and we will try to get some more black-type for her, but Saturday is a good starting point. She’s a really nice mare and I’m very lucky she has come into my hands.
From Team Snowden
Message: (Saturday, Doomben Race 8, Doomben 10,000) Mazu will be better suited around the tighter turning Doomben track in his bid to turn the tables on Giga Kick. The speed was full on in the All Aged (Stakes) and was a bit ridiculous. He’s dropping back in distance to 1200 metres which suits and he should like Doomben. He’s going every bit as good as last year (when he won this race) and he does seem to be the forgotten horse in the race as he’s come through different races this year.
From The Editor
Brisbane Race 6 – Cepheus
Brisbane Race 8 – Giga Kick