Locals in action at Goulburn and Cowra

Gundagai trainer, Dave “Darky” Blundell will take two runners to Goulburn today with Curioso and Only A Dream set to contest 1600m events.

Dave Blundell will take two runners to Goulburn today with Curioso and Only A Dream contesting races three and six respectively. 

Curioso will jump from gate 12 in the 1600m Maiden Plate and has the services of Brendan Ward. 

The I Am Invincible gelding hasn’t placed in seven starts but has been getting home okay in recent runs, so he could be an improver on the big Goulburn straight. 

Only A Dream will also step up to the mile today when contesting the 1600m Class Two Handicap.

Connections draw gate three and Tyler Schiller is in the saddle for the ride in what looks a tough little event. 


Addocarr will be on the quick back-up today at Ipswich when starting as the top weight in the fifth event, the 1700m benchmark 65 Handicap.

The Tony Gollan trained four-year-old will have Baylee Nothdurft in the saddle and gets in nicely after drawing gate two. 

The Sizzling gelding will have to carry 60kg but there is a little rain around and Ipswich is currently rated a a soft five.

The Tim O’Malley part-owned runner does look well placed and was a good second over the 1700m last time out and should strip even fitter for this event. 

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Fellow Gundagai trainer, Michelle Russell will also travel to Goulburn to contest race three, the 1600m Maiden Plate. 

Russell will enter Not Certain, who has drawn gate 11 and the services of apprentice hoop, Ellen Hennessy.

The six-year-old Danerich gelding caught the eye last start when rattling home for fourth over the mile at Albury at the ripe old odds of 100/1 and could be a value runner in this race. 

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Tumbarumba trainer Mont Waters will travel to Cowra on Saturday will Miracle Knight getting in nicely for the second event.

The Knight Exemplar gelding should shoot straight to the front in the 950m Class One Handicap after drawing gate one and will only carry 52kg after a three-kilogram claim by apprentice hoop, Julia Presits. 

Miracle Knight faded after leading them up over the 1000m at Albury first up this preparation on heavy ground and will surely appreciate the firmer surface at Cowra. 

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The third event at Cowra tomorrow is a 1200m Maiden Plate and there is some interest with the locally owned Sundane and Tan Line joining the Todd Smart trained Mr Maharaj. 

Sundane is trained by Doug Gorrel but is coming off a poor run at Gundagai and would need to improve to figure in this event.

Connections get no luck though, drawing gate 11 but the in-form Jordan Mallyon does take the ride. 

Tan Line is an Andy Groves owned four-year-old resuming from a 30-week let up for Canberra trainer Mick Miladinovic. 

The Declaration of War mare has finished seventh in two career starts at Wagga and it could be worth watching how the Canberra runner goes first time up.

Mr Maharaj was disappointing when resuming at Wagga last month but does have some ability and should improve on the firmer track.

Connections get no luck though, drawing gate 15 but Johnny Kissick will give the Iffraaj gelding every chance possible from the carpark.  

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Two more runners with local interest come up in the fifth event at Cowra, which is the 1100m Benchmark Handicap. 

Heza Gentleman will jump from gate eight and has Kayla Nisbet in the saddle and based on recent runs, he should be right in this.

The Mitchell and Desiree Kearney trained three-year-old was a good second when resuming at Cessnock on June 2 and was a little unlucky last start, when beaten only 1.8 lengths at Moruya on June 26.

The Todd Smart trained Eurosay will also contest the race after drawing gate 11 and the services of Johnny Kissick.

The Eurozone gelding is TAB Highway placed and is coming off a very stylish trial win at Gundagai and could be one to watch if Kissick can get across from the outside draw.

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The final event at Cowra is the 1100m Benchmark 58 Handicap and again, there is a few runners with local interest. 

Bid Of Faith, All About Me and Euro Rhythmic will all contest the race and all are chances on their best form. 

Bid Of Faith, who was a good winner at Wagga two starts back, draws nicely with gate one and attracts the services of Kayla Nisbet. 

The Doug Gorrel runner will be the top weight with 61kg but looks very well placed. 

All About Me for Todd Smart will jump from gate eight and has Johnny Kissick on board.

The Canberra runner hit the line well at Gundagai when first up this preparation and Smart has indicated that she will only improve this time out. 

The locally owned Euro Rhythmic is also in the race and draws well with gate two and will have Brendan Ward on board. 

The Eurozone filly is a speedy type and will likely lead from the inside draw but there are question marks over her ability to run out a strong 1100m. 

Winners and Losers

Caccini ran out of steam at Warwick Farm on Wednesday after leading them up in the 1300m Benchmark 70 Handicap. 

The locally owned Norm Gardner runner was taken to the front by Jess Taylor from gate six and was making every post a winner before fading in the final furlong. 

The Nicconi mare was only beaten four lengths though and wasn’t disgraced by any means.

Connections should be confident that she has another mid-week city win in her.

Jockey watch

Aaron Bullock gets back in the saddle this week, with two rides at Scone today and four rides at Tamworth on Monday.

The Kris Lees trained Bandahara looks his best chance of winning in the fifth race today when contesting the 1600m Class One Handicap. 

Connections draw gate one and the four-year-old Fastnet Rock gelding looks a genuine miler and will be flashing home in this event. 

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Nick Souquet will travel to Moruya on Monday with four rides booked. 

Riding in the first four races, Souquet jumps aboard Russian Missile, Can’t Duch Dis, Tactical Ploy and My Boy Lubby.  

A masterful display

Battle Master made it career win number three at Ballarat on Tuesday when he greeted the judge first in the 1400m benchmark 58 Handicap. 

The Master of Design gelding that was bred by the Paul Sturt via his Sturt Thoroughbreds breeding establishment, was reasonably well supported on the day; paying $5 on the NSW tote. 

Trained by Mitch Freedman and ridden by Jarrod Fry, the four-year-old got in by 0.8 of a length to hold off Leila’s Star and Regal Effort when winning the $20,000 event. 

Mitch Freedman was very happy to see Battle Master back in the winner’s circle on the back of three consecutive third placings.

“He had been knocking on the door and certainly deserved that win, as did his owners,” Freedman said. 

“He has built up quite a good record now, though he has thrown a few races away in between.”

Freedman believes they have found the secret to Battle Master’s racing style, meaning more wins could be on the horizon. 

“If you hook him out wide, he tends to lay in. So, we tinkered with his gear a bit and rode him quietly. He won his maiden up the rails in similar fashion, he can’t lay in when he is on the fence,” Freedman laughed. 

The Tumut-bred gelding has now earned connections $74,155 after winning three times and placing a further six times in 15 career starts.

Nangus trainer on a winner  

Nangus greyhound trainer, Alan Clare has found a winner in his brindle bitch, Saltarello, who has won two of her three career starts; the most recent being a dominant five-length win at Wagga on July 3.

The Fernando Bale bitch bolted in, running 18.31 in a 320m fifth grade event, not far of the best of the night time, which was 18.15.

Saltarello debuted on June 21 at Wagga, running second to Got To Casino over the shorts, before breaking her maiden a week later over the same distance and same track as a $3.40 chance.

Clare also has another well-performed greyhound in Samshu, who has had six starts for two wins, two seconds and two thirds. 

From the same litter that was out of Jingjing, the October 2018 whelping most recently won at Wagga on June 14; coincidently recording 18.31 in a 320m fifth grade. 

Both Samshu (race six) and Saltarello (race eight) will be action again tonight at Wagga, contesting the 1-3 wins 400m fifth grade heats.

From the Steward’s Room

On Wednesday, Racing NSW announced that all Victorian horses have been banned from racing in, or being transferred to NSW.

In an announcement to all participants, Racing NSW detailed the new rules, that were in place effective immediately.  

“Effective July 8, 2020 Racing NSW has prohibited the transfer of horses from Victoria to any NSW racing stable, licensed premises or racecourse. The previous protocols which permitted the transfer of horses from Victoria have now been rescinded until further notice,” the announcement read.

Racing NSW also said workers from Victoria, including essential personnel, must complete 14 days quarantine before being allowed to attend a racecourse or licensed premises in the state.

Trainers, including Albury’s Mitch Beer, had previously been allowed to have their staff work at their stables and return across the border to their homes in Victoria via a special permit, but that won’t be the case going forward.

“Any previous approval provided by Racing NSW for a person to travel from Victoria to NSW licensed premises or racecourses is rescinded,” the announcement read.

“Such persons must contact Racing NSW Stewards at the commencement of their isolation/quarantine and provide a location of where they will isolate/quarantine and date of commencement.”

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The meeting originally set down for Albury on Tuesday has since been moved to Wagga due to the current Covid-19 concerns on the border.  

Murrumbidgee Turf Club CEO, Steve Keene said the meeting would be run on the main course despite the track being well used in recent times. 

“The meeting will be on the course proper, there is a bit of wear and tear from the last meeting we had but it will hold up,” Keene said. 

“Our last five meetings have been on rain affected surfaces but we are happy to do our bit to offer racing to participants.

“There is a little bit of work but the guys are really diligent in getting the track back into shape after any meeting and it will be ready for Tuesday.”

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Jockey Blaike McDougall appealed the decision of Racing NSW Stewards to suspend his jockey’s licence in full for a period of six weeks commencing July 10 and to expire on August 21 for providing false and misleading evidence to the Stewards at Hawkesbury on June 23. 

The Appeal Panel upheld the appeal on penalty and determined his licence to ride in races be suspended for a period of one month to commence on July 10 and to expire on August 10.