ONE trainer has had a solitary Wyong starter for a win so far this season, and the other is yet to have a runner at the track in the opening months of the racing year.
But both are keen to make their mark at tomorrow’s second last meeting before the $200,000 Magic Millions 2YO Classic grabs the national spotlight on Wednesday, December 14.
Newcastle’s Jason Deamer scored with Hard To Say at Wyong on November 5 and is back there with him and lightly-raced Miss Shalaa, while Royal Randwick’s multiple Group 1 winning trainer Ron Quinton makes his debut at the track this season with newcomers Beauty Crusade and Biographer.
Tim Clark will ride both Hard To Say in the 1100m Ettalong Bowling Club Benchmark 64, and Miss Shalaa in the 1600m Stop Abuse At The Start 4YO & Up Maiden, while Andrew Adkins partners the Quinton pair Beauty Crusade in the 1350m Raise Respect Midway Maiden, and Biographer in the 1000m Elimination Against Violence Maiden.
Hard To Say and Miss Shalaa are raced by Deamer’s major client Dynamic Syndications, and the former is bypassing a Warwick Farm engagement today to focus on Wyong.
“We discussed both races and decided to go to Wyong as it is only his second run back,” Deamer said.
“Hard To Say resumed as a gelding when he won a 1000m Midway Maiden here earlier in the month at his first start since being placed at Eagle Farm in August.
“Although it was a narrow margin, he did a good job as he drew the outside barrier and went flat out all the way.
“The first two had a decent margin on the third placegetter. Hard To Say had only one trial going into that race, so fitness wise he will be improved and I’ve been very happy with him since.”
An Exceed And Excel three-year-old, Hard To Say was a $160,000 MM Gold Coast yearling purchase last year for Dynamic, and has returned just over $76,000 so far from only six starts.
Dynamic also purchased Miss Shalaa for half that amount at the Gold Coast, but at the previous year’s MM sale, and she has raced only four times in the country for three seconds.
“She came to me from a Sydney stable without trialling,” Deamer said. “She has settled in well and is pretty honest.
“Shalaa Miss ran fourth and second at Gunnedah and Port Macquarie earlier in the year, and her two recent runs this preparation at Taree and Scone this month have been good.
“It looks the right race to try her at the provincials, and I’m confident she will handle the 1600m at her first attempt.”
Hard To Say was a $4 second favourite with TAB.com.au in early markets behind local trainer Tracey Bartley’s first-up winner Mabel ($3.30), and another local, Kristen Buchanan’s $6 third favourite Oakfield Triumph.
Miss Shalaa was also second favorite, but at $4.40, behind Diamond Drummer ($2.30), who has blinkers back on.
Ron Quinton’s three-year-olds Beauty Crusade and Biographer last year were $375,000 Inglis Classic yearling sale and $500,000 Magic Millions yearling sale buys respectively.
But the latter, a I Am Invincible colt and the first foal of dual WA winner Precious Memories, was subsequently resold online to his breeder Ray Gall for $95,000 in April, after three starts, two in South Australia and the other in country Victoria, for seconds at Morphettville Parks and Terang.
“Ray bought Biographer back when he wasn’t considered a likely stallion prospect and put on the market,” Quinton said. “The Gall family has been a wonderful supporter of mine, and it’s my job now to try to get the best out of the colt.
“Obviously he has ability, and the Wyong race is a good starting point and it’s the same with Beauty Crusade, who is raced in Hong Kong interests.
“He was a bit of a handful earlier, but has been gelded and has had the benefit of two recent trials at home. I’m not going there expecting to win, but looking forward to hopefully seeing him run well all the same.”
Quinton has made important gear changes on the stablemates. He has taken blinkers and a tongue tie off Biographer, and will substitute a cross-over nose band.
Beauty Crusade has been gelded, and also will race in a cross-over nose band and wear ear muffs, which will be removed at the barrier.
Biographer was installed as $5 fourth favourite when markets opened, in an open race behind $4 top elect Surrenders, and Beauty Crusade was $4.80 second favourite, with topweight Edge Of Reward holding clear sway at $2.30.
The rail is in the true position, and a Good 4 rating has been posted for the eight race program getting away at 1.15pm.
RACE 1 – 1.15pm: STOP ABUSE AT THE START 4YO & UP MAIDEN PLATE, 1600m: 1 DIAMOND DRUMMER, 2 Miss Shalaa, 3 Rangitikei, 4 Zimtopia.
RACE 2 – 1.50pm: #NO EXCUSE FOR ABUSE 4YO & UP MAIDEN HCP, 1100m: 1 EXPENSIBLE, 2 Oakfield Blue Bell, 3 Oakfield Paperbark, 4 Ma’s Dream.
RACE 3 – 2.25pm: RAISE RESPECT MIDWAY MAIDEN HCP, 1350m: 1 EDGE OF REWARD, 2 Beauty Crusade, 3 Mancconi, 4 Emphatic Bel.
RACE 4 – 3.05pm: ELIMINATION AGAINST VIOLENCE MAIDEN PLATE, 1000m: 1 SURRENDERS, 2 Meod, 3 Selfless Act, 4 Biographer.
RACE 5 – 3.40pm: REPORT. REPORT OFTEN CONDITIONAL BENCHMARK 68 HCP, 1200m: 1 MORALIST, 2 Dimaggio, 3 Ranuncula, 4 Crimson Rock.
RACE 6 – 4.20pm: JOHN ELLIOT CLASS 1 HCP, 1350m: 1 WEST OF AFRICA, 2 Oakfield Waratah, 3 Assiduity, 4 Bat Out Of Hell.
RACE 7 – 4.55pm: ETTALONG BOWLING CLUB PROVINCIAL BENCHMARK 64 HCP, 1100m: 1 MABEL, 2 Hard To Say, 3 Oakfield Triumph, 4 Xpresso.
RACE 8 – 5.30pm: THE MOUNTIES GROUP 4YO & UP BENCHMARK 64 HCP, 1600m: 1 KICKATORP, 2 Duke Of Buckingham, 3 Dream Eclipse, 4 Da Nang Star.