By Tony Megahey
While Kris Lees again has the strength in numbers, young trainer Damien Lane offers value and compelling credentials for Monday’s Tamworth TAB meeting.
Wyong-based Lane has the momentum of a winning treble recently at his hometown of Coonamble, and his star regional sprinter Kanguru follows up after impressively winning the prestige $27,000 Crystal Sprint from a hot field in the Central West.
“He’s been a super horse for connections; he does need things to go his way with his racing pattern, but where he’s drawn he should get cover to be highly competitive again,” Lane offered.
Kanguru contests the Open Class Rapid Clean 1200m sprint with 57kg for Rachael Murray who rode him brilliantly to win off the pace at Coonamble.
“She did, he’s a seven-year-old but he’s holding his form so well. He won the Coonamble Cannonball for us last season and now another Country feature in the Crystal sprint.
“His benchmark allows us to place him in suitable regional races, but he’s still capable of being competitive in a city mid-week. That’s still an option for the owners.
“There’s some strong form in Monday’s race but where he’s drawn we should get the right cover off the speed again.”
Kanguru powered from midfield to win the Crystal sprint in a photo from Desert Marshall an opponent again on Monday. Other leading contenders are the Sue Grills's sprinter Helarocity who is coming off successive Doomben placings while Brotherly Secret won the recent strong Tamworth Spring Cup.
Lane’s other starters are five-race winning mare Cervinia in the Thread’s Effect BM 66 (1600m) and outsider Eyota in the Easter’s Sand, Soil and Gravel Class 1 (1400m).
“Cervinia is out to her right distance now and back in grade from Wyong where she led and was probably disappointing at 1300m. But she’s won twice at 1600m for us and she’s drawn and weighted to roll along here.
“Eyota can be quirky and stubborn but he has got more ability than his form shows so he’s capable of improving in a suitable race.”
Meanwhile, Lees has seven runners throughout the eight-race Tamworth program and some debut runners will be highly fancied as they are well educated with several trials. At present Tamworth is rated a soft 5 track with fine weather predicted.