By Tony Megahey
Regular TAB Highway contender Joe Cleary has an inkling he could yet have two contenders as he strives to climb the mountain into the spectacular $1.3 million The Kosciuszko event in October.
From the celebrated Queanbeyan racing family, larrikin Joe has always had a high opinion of lightly-raced outsider Not Bossy ($31 on TAB fixed odds) who has been targeted for Saturday’s TAB $60,000 Class 3, Highway Plate (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens. And maybe far bigger occasions.
“I’ve always thought this mare would win better races, she’s been screaming out for more ground - she gets that on Saturday and she can run us a race at big odds,” Cleary enthused from Queanbeyan trackwork.
“We set her for this Highway a way back. She’s come back super after a let-up and freshen up and you’ve got to be ambitious in this game.
"We’ve drawn sweetly, nicely weighted and I know Kathy (O’Hara) will give her the right ride.
“She’s got decent form up to 1600m and beyond. We’ve were forced to run her in unsuitable sprints to get her ready for this. And who knows if she keeps progressing?
"Obviously, Coolring is my leading The Kosciuszko contender as he’s Group and Listed placed, represents quality and deserves a slot. But this is a real nice mare and a bit of juice in the track would help her. And that Kosciuszko is exciting, a wonderful concept for country racing.”
Not Bossy, a four-year-old Street Boss mare, is raced by Canberra publican John Collins who races several other gallopers with Cleary. Not Bossy carries 55.5kg for Kathy and from barrier two, as Cleary anticipates, should get enough favours.
Cleary though is under no illusions of the depth of opposition: “Always a tough race to win when you’ve Danny Williams and Matthew Dunn targeting with the right form.”
Williams is represented by recent impressive Goulburn double winner Pierino (Blake Shinn, $7.50) and Canterbury Park placegetter Biodynamic (Jason Collett, $19).
Multiple-series winner Dunn has accepted with Wallander ($10), a Doomben Saturday grade placegetter and promising Vivid Pink ($26). The chances certainly don’t end there.
In a particularly deep race, Jan Bowen’s Highway winner last week, Roman Typhoon ($5.50), backs up for Kerrin McEvoy. Leading the betting is $2.20 favourite Nicconita, with Rosehill at present rated a good four in fine weather.