By Rod Fuller
Racing returns to Port Macquarie on Wednesday following the Christmas break with Accoustix looking set to provide the early cheer for punters in the Harelec Solar Power Specialists New Year’s Day Cup.
The flashy son of Snitzel handled the class rise in fine style with a decisive victory over Django Unreined and My Zebrinka at Taree a fortnight ago and many astute racing judges believe the Cup feature is well within his grasp.
The recent performance was only the gelding’s second run from a lengthy spell and the Tas Morton-trained galloper possesses an overall record of 14 starts for three wins and four minor placings.
Prominent local rider, Luke Rolls, has already been engaged for the mount and Accoustix looks well suited by the 1210m assignment having already won over similar distances on two previous occasions.
The main danger revolves around the lightly-raced Zariz gelding, Dollson, following success at Kempsey in April and a narrow placing at Newcastle in Benchmark 70 company last July.
Under the care of respected Coffs Harbour mentor, Donna Grisdale, the son of Dolled Up is resuming from a lengthy break but does have a good first-up strike rate and following the money trail could be vital when assessing his chances.
Despite being labelled with a large weight impost, an improved performance is expected from the John Sprague trained topweight, Stylish Pattern, following a resumption in a recent Highway event at Randwick.
The Canford Cliffs galloper stepped up from maiden status to Class 2 company successfully at Newcastle when last in work and the stable has enlisted prominent local jockey, Ben Looker, for the mount.
Ben made a triumphant riding return at Bowraville at his first day back from an enforced holiday aboard Alshahhad with the All Too Hard gelding facing stiff opposition in the final event on Wednesday’s card against Delight and Zapaluck.
Razano seems well poised to break her maiden status for the Sprague stable in the opening event while Prince of Braemar, Graceful Star and Eurogem are set to provide a great battle in the middle-distance Class 1 Handicap.
The club would like to acknowledge the continued raceday support of the solar energy equipment suppliers for the district, Harelec, and look forward to entertaining their management and staff.
It is also a big welcome to the team from Barbers on Murray and the club is greatly appreciative of their sponsorship and encourage all patrons to look up their premises at Shop 1 /3 Murray Street.
There will be excellent trackside catering, wagering and bar facilities available on the day to cater for the anticipated large crowd of holidaymakers with the spacious lawns providing a great place for family picnics.
The six-race program is set to be run on a good racing surface with full TAB and Sky Racing coverage to coincide with major meetings being conducted on the Kensington Track, at Flemington and Doomben.
Racing action continues with an eight-race program to be conducted on Friday 10th January with all roads leading to Port for the running of the $60,000 Queen of the North Handicap, one of the blue-ribbon events on the club’s calendar, to be run on Friday 24th January.
President, Greg Delaforce and the Committee of Port Macquarie Race Club would like to wish everyone the very best for a safe, happy and successful New Year and it is onward and upward for a wonderful 2020.
Race 1 – 2.22pm HARELEC OFFGRID MAIDEN HCP (1512M): 2 Razano, 9 The Actress, 7 Ryebuck
Race 2 – 2.57pm STOWE ELECTRICAL BENCHMARK 50 HCP (1512M): 8 Ravitude, 4 Can’t Catch Her, 6 Teo Torriate
Race 3 – 3.36pm BARBERS ON MURRAY CLASS 1 HCP (1512M): 4 Prince of Braemar, 5 Graceful Star, 6 Eurogem
Race 4 – 4.16pm PORT'S NUMBER 1 BARBERS ON MURRAY MAIDEN PLATE (1110M): 2 Kid Mac, 4 Thorapest, 1 Chosen Monarch
Race 5 – 4.56pm HARELEC SOLAR POWER SPECIALSITS NEW YEAR'S DAY CUP CL 3 HCP (1210M): 3 Accoustix, 5 Dollson, 1 Stylish Pattern
Race 6 – 5.36pm HARELEC REMOTE AREA POWER BENCHMARK 50 HCP (1110M): 9 Delight, 7 Zapluck, 4 Alshahhad