By Mark Brassel
Armidale trainer William Wain has been involved in racehorses since he was a boy and is confident of a big day out when he heads to Moree on Thursday.
“I’ve always helped out in the training of our horses with my father, Stafford. Even when I was in school I was constantly at the stables – we’ve always done the training together.”
Wain will take five horses to Thursday’s Moree Ag Supplies and Steel TAB race meeting and believes The Equinator (Benchmark 55 Handicap, 1400m) is his strongest prospect on the seven-race card.
The Equinator has been racing in solid form, having recorded a win and two placings from his three starts this campaign, having resumed with a Gunnedah (1250m) win at big odds ($31) on 27 May.
The five-year-old then ran third on his home track (1400m) on 5 June: “He led and our apprentice Sophia Thatcher probably let him go a little hard in front and he weakened that last little bit,” Wain said.
“She’s still learning and would not have had a dozen race rides before that day.”
Last start The Equinator chased hard when runner-up to the heavily-backed Turcotte ($5 into $2.60) at Gunnedah (1300m) on 2 July.
“He ran a very good race the other day and seems to get better with each run. I’m sure he’ll take plenty of beating at Moree.”
Wain’s Hard Romp will line-up in the Gwydir Handicap (1200m) and is backing up, having finished sixth to Just a Bullet in the Sir James Kirby Handicap on Grafton Cup Day last Wednesday.
“It was a nice run in strong company on Wednesday; they came home in under 34 seconds (last 600m) so for him to make up ground from last position was excellent,” Wain explained. “He’s got a bit sneaky in his old age and he’s doing a couple of things he shouldn’t.
“He usually struggles at the 1200m but he’s pulled up great and I’ll just have him on the water walker in the days leading up to Thursday.”
Cocky Rocky is a two-year-old and will be running in the Maiden Plate (1300m): “He’s out of a mare that was handy for us, Gregoria (won six races), but went a bit too hard at his second start at Tamworth.
“However, with each gallop he seems to improve and he’ll be much better next preparation as he has some growing to do.
“Bouwmeester (Maiden Handicap, 950m) is an unknown as we’ve only had him for a month from Victoria. He’s only a little fellow but well-bred and we bought him on Bloodstockauction.com.”
Wain’s last runner is Roboosto (Class 1 Hcp, 1300m) and Wain admitted “he hasn’t shown that much” in three runs this time in. Bathurst-based jockey Jamie Gibbons will ride all five runners.
Moree Race Club is offering free entry to Thursday’s meeting with bookies and a full on-course tote, a canteen and bar, and a courtesy bus with gates opening at midday.
The day is sponsored by Moree Veterinary Hospital and Picone Bookmaking Brothers.