“Westy’ a major threat to hotpot in Sires’ Stakes heat
Trainer Ray Green isn’t putting up the white flag just because Beaudiene Western and Make Way run into the highly touted Major Trojan at Cambridge on Thursday night.
The bookies will open Major Trojan at microscopic odds, drawn the pole in the opening Sires’ Stakes heat of the season, but Green says he will need to show more gate speed than last time to be a good thing.
Sold to Australian interests for a reported $250,000 after pacing 2:39.5 first-up at Auckland, Major Trojan left with his front line rivals before taking over the running.
But Green fancies the chances of his speedy charge Beaudiene Western crossing Major Trojan at the start which would make him the one to beat.
“Barrier four is a good place to draw if you’re going for the lead and if he got there I think he’d have too much speed for the other horse.’’
Beaudiene Western would be “sharp as a tack” for the 1700 metre trip after two runs back this time, says Green.
First-up at Auckland, on the back of some smart workouts, he spoiled his winning chances by racing too keenly in front for David Butcher, succumbing only late to Edamfast in a slick 2:40.2.
And last Friday night at Auckland he was wiped out at the start when To Sir With Love galloped in front of him on dispatch. Butcher, immediately behind him, was forced to lean way back in the cart to restrain Beaudiene Western, leaving him no chance from the tail of the field.
“My only concern is he’s still getting on one rein a little bit but he should get away with it going left-handed. He should be better that way round.’’
Beaudiene Western was a close third in a Sires’ Stakes two-year-old heat at Cambridge last season, and also contested the Jewels there, so is familiar with the circuit.
Major Trojan, on the other hand has not been to Cambridge and Green says he showed enough greenness at Auckland for that to be a factor.
“When he turned for home he (Nathan Purdon) nearly lost him. He turned his head on the side and half galloped.’’
Ducking sharply into the passing lane, Major Trojan still had enough momentum to win decisively.
“But it will be interesting to see how he fronts up to a better class of horse tomorrow night.’’
Major Trojan’s only other start was when he debuted at Addington in February for trainer Michael Purdon and was lame after running second to Heisenberg, found to have fractured a hind cannon bone.
Make Way worthy runner
While Green favours Beaudiene Western over stablemate Make Way, he is not discounting the Mach Three colt’s chances.
Make Way, like his stablemate, lost his chance at the start last week when he panicked at the sight of To Sir With Love galloping alongside him, when in tight quarters on the fence, and went out in sympathy.
Despite that he was able to record the fastest closing sectionals in the race, clocking 55.9 for his last 800 and 27.5 for his last 400.
With winner Alta Leonie running 56.2 and 27.6 in front it was impossible for him to get into the race.
Green says Make Way’s final fast work this week was very good.
High gate speed will help Abraham
Green’s only other runner on the night, Abraham, has drawn the outside of the gate in the sixth race.
But Green says that’s the hole he started from when on debut at Cambridge in August - and he easily found the top.
“He has very good gate speed and we’ll be launching him again and have a dab for the front.
“If you go back from there you get nothing.’’
Abraham was placed at Cambridge second-up.
More news in Harness
Better draw will help Frisco but Ray’s quartet for Friday all in early stages of new prep
Argyle salutes at last and Mark confident he’ll keep the till ticking over in the next grade
Unlucky Argyle deserves to be rewarded at Albion Park tonight - just no bad luck please
Ray looking forward to Lincoln Lou and fully oxygenated Frisco Bay at Cambridge on Friday
Our runners this week
Saturday night at Albion Park
Our runners this week: How our trainer rates them
Friday night at Auckland
Race 2: Frisco Bay
“He obviously needed the run last week. He pulled his way round the field and sat outside the leader but he couldn’t cop a run like that first-up and got tired. The ability is there, whether he’s fit enough or not we’ll find out. But I expect him to go well, the three draw is much better than last week.”
Race 2: Lenny Lincoln
“He’ll probably need a race but he’s capable of running a slot. He’s unlucky not to have won a race, all three of his seconds were good. He’s got a bit better with each of his trials this time in and he got home well last Saturday, after coming widest on the turn.”
Race 3: Obadiah Dragon
“The way the race was run at Cambridge last week, his effort wasn’t bad at all. Moni (Monika Ranger) said he felt strong and, if he’d been a few slots closer, he would have been right in it. He’ll be improved for the run.”
Race 3: Leo Lincoln
“He’s very consistent - he’s only missed a couple of cheques. But he’s another just coming back and should improve with the run.”