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Further Strength Added To Ballina's Open Handicap (Monday)

By Geoff Newling

Ballina Jockey Club received another seven late nominations for Monday’s seven-race TAB meeting today making the Aquis Farm-sponsored Open and 2YO Handicaps stronger betting propositions.

The $20,000 1250m Aquis Farm Open Handicap now has nine potential runners after the addition of Halls Creek (Daniel Bowen), Push The Sky Away (Neville Stewart), She Tells Lies (Leo Clapham) and Secret Blend (Angela Plumb).

“The open should be a decent race now,” advised Ballina Jockey Club general manager, Matt Bertram. “If the track holds up I think the open will hold up too. We have scattered showers forecast the next few days.

"Six months ago we were missing everything but lately we’ve been hit with the lot. Two days ago we had 30mm and Lismore had zero but the track is holding up good though. It is rated a Heavy 8 at the moment."

Saipan has received 61kg topweight, the Ben Currie-trained Queenslander having won eight of his 24 starts for $90,885 in prizemoney. Red Letter Day, winner of six of his 30 starts for $111,395, is the only other horse with more than the 54kg minimum. Red Letter Day has 56kg while Halls Creek has 54kg.

Lismore-trained Halls Creek is also a winner at Ballina, successful there last preparation in a Class 1 1300m. The gelding son of Tavistock is up in grade though. He has won two of his 26 starts for $54,420 in prizemoney but comes up against the likes of Saipan (Ben Currie), Red Letter Day and Grafton-trained Push The Sky Away.

The Neville Stewart-trained mare has won five of her 26 starts for $86,605 in prizemoney and is also a winner at Ballina. She was sixth there at her only other start at Ballina when resuming from a spell on a Heavy 10 at the most recent Ballina meeting.

Casino-prepared She Tells Lies is also a Ballina winner for trainer Leo Clapham. She has also won six of her 45 starts and been placed five times at Ballina as well in 13 starts there. Final fields will be out on Thursday morning with acceptances to be declared by 9am.

View the weights with full form & race replays for Ballina here

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