Good draw gives Argyle a chance to secure sweet trip and go back-to-back on Saturday
Trainer Mark Dux can see a likely scenario that will give Argyle a great chance of scoring back-to-back wins at Albion Park on Saturday night.
The four-year-old put a long drought behind him when he exploded home to score at odds of $31 last week and, in a field of similar quality this week, he has finally landed a good draw in the second race.
But while Argyle and Angus Garrard will leave the gate from two, Dux doubts they can cross the pole runner, Luvbite, who led all the way from one on Tuesday.
“There is speed outside us though and I can Midnight Calm going forward - when he’s free rolling in front he can run a bit of time.
“It will all come down to whether Luvbite holds the lead and, if he does, and leaves Midnight Calm out there, we could be sitting pretty in the one-one. If that unfolds we’ll be strong at the finish.”
Dux believes he finally has Argyle in the right condition to hold his form.
“He hasn’t had a decent campaign yet, something’s always gone wrong. But I can’t fault him at the moment, his times have been good, and I think he’ll be thereabouts.”
If you go back through Argyle’s form, Dux says you’ll see how he’s come up against far better fields.
In his first start in the state last November he finished second in a Group III three-year-old race behind Future Assured, now a free-for-all horse with 11 wins.
Since then, first a knee injury then a foot abscess have sidelined him for long periods.
“It’s a nice enough field on Saturday night but I’m sure he’ll race well.”
Only two horses in the 1660 metre race are rated higher than Argyle, giving him a great shot at taking the major slice of the A$20,770 stake.
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Friday night at Cambridge
Race 3: Lincoln Lou
“He’s a beautiful little horse and I’m looking forward to seeing him run. It’s hard to know how good he is, or how far he’ll go, but I guess we’ll find out on Friday. He’s the one to beat from the draw. If he doesn’t win, he won’t be far away.”
Race 5: Commander Lincoln
“I won’t be holding my breath. He tries hard enough but he lacks a bit of high speed.”
Race 8: Onyx Shard
“It’s two and a half months since she last raced, and she didn’t grow as much as I thought she would, but I’m expecting her to go a good race. Her last two trials have been good and she’s pulled up well.”
Race 8: Obadiah Dragon
“He’ll need a good trip from five but he’s not out of it. He went a good race last time at Cambridge and would be as equal a chance as Onxy Shard.”
Race 8: Beaudiene Rocknroll
“It’s heart-in-the-mouth stuff with him until they let them go but he should step away this time. Zac (Butcher) said the gate went particularly slowly before that race and that’s why he got impatient. I thought he did well to recover for third. If he made the front, where he goes best, he’d be hard to beat.”
Race 9: Frisco Bay
“He’s a tidy horse and I’m expecting a big run. We’ve sorted the problem he had with his breathing last season and he’s right in the zone now after a second and a win at the workouts.”
Mark Dux’s comments
Saturday night at Albion Park
Race 5: Argyle
11.02pm NZ time
“It wouldn’t have mattered where he drew this week, he’s in the money, barring bad luck. He’s going terrific and he gets in so well at the ratings.”