Mont Waters will be hoping his luck changes at Tumut Turf Club on Saturday with the Tumbarumba trainer preparing a two-pronged attack on the Tumut Mile.
Both Namarari and Bay Lane will take on the $18,000 feature race over the 1600m journey and Waters confirmed both gallopers would be racing.
“I am still going to Tumut with both of them and we will try our luck,” Waters said.
Namarari has been a little disappointing in recent runs. The Wandjina gelding was forced to work harder than usual two starts back when finishing fifth and beaten 1.62 lengths in a 1400m Benchmark 50 Handicap by If You Say So at Tumut on Boxing Day.
“I know it was a hard run at Boxing Day and I forgave him for letting go at the finish because he had gone five weeks without a run,” Waters explained.
Then on the quick back-up at Gundagai on New Year’s Day, the five-year-old failed to fire in the 1400m Adelong Cup when finishing last and beaten some 11 lengths.
“I think Namarari just had a bad day at the office at Gundagai,” Waters said.
“I am hoping I backed him up too quickly after a hard run at Boxing Day and that’s why he didn’t run well.”
Bay Lane is usually a Tumut specialist, but the eight-year-old hasn’t been good enough following a good fourth at Tumut on Boxing Day and a third at Cooma earlier last month.
Since then, the Zariz gelding finishing seventh of eight at Albury in a 1600m Benchmark 58 Handicap before finishing fourth and well beaten by 14 lengths in the 1600m Benchmark 50 Handicap at Tumut on Boxing Day.
“I’m not sure Bay Lane has come back,” Waters said.
“His run at Cooma was a ripper on a soft track, and then he disappointed at Albury on a rock-hard three and he was average at Tumut.”
Brendan Ward will ride Namarari and Molly Bourke jumps aboard Bay Lane in the feature race and Waters explained that both gallopers were still bound for the Tumbarumba Cup.
“Both will go to the Tumbarumba Cup all being well.
“Bay Lane will then probably go back to Tumut then I will reassess his future after those runs.”
The Tumut Mile meeting is the club’s only TAB meeting of the season, and Waters agreed that it was good to see locals chase more money on a country circuit.
“Yeah, for sure it’s good,” Waters said.
“Mitch Beer and those trainers have a couple there, but I didn’t see any Matty Dale or Luke Pepper runners there and hopefully the locals can win something.”
Tumbarumba owner, Gordon Kelso, and his family will also have a key interest in the Tumut Mile, with the Doug Gorrel-trained Would Be King racing on the quick back-up.
The Canberra galloper has been thereabouts in tougher races this preparation without winning.
Following a 20-week spell, the seven-year-old finished second in the $50,000 1400m Benchmark 58 at Gundagai’s showcase Snake Gully Cup meeting.
Following a seventh at Queanbeyan in the tough Showcase 1460m Class Three Handicap, the Lethal Force gelding them finished second in the 1600m Benchmark 65 Handicap, beaten only 0.79 lengths.
The Tumbarumba-owned galloper then stepped up over 2000m at Canberra two starts back, finishing seventh, beaten 13.24 lengths before running third at Canberra on Thursday, beaten only a length in the 1600m Benchmark 60 Handicap.
Mick Heagney is booked to take the ride and this year’s Tumut Mile looks an easier race for the more than capable Would Be King.