By Geoff Newling
Three Tamworth trainers are headed to Sydney chasing metro success tonight and on Saturday.
Lesley Jeffriess will run last start Armidale winner Lonely Orphan ($26 on TAB fixed odds) at Canterbury Park tonight, Melissa Dennett has Sudden Blitz ($19) engaged in tomorrow’s $60,000 Highway Handicap (1300m) while Sue Grills runs sprint star Fickle Folly ($4.40) in the $100,000 Spinalcure Racing4Research Sprint (1000m).
While Dennett and Grills both have runners at today’s Tamworth meeting, Lonely Orphan is Jeffriess's only starter on the weekend and while the four-year-old daughter of Domesday has drawn wide (14) and in the last race of the night (9.45pm) it doesn’t pose as much a problem for Jeffriess as it might do with other horses.
“They gave us the visitors' draw and the last race too,” Lesley Jeffriess laughed. “That’s not too bad though. The barrier doesn’t matter that much with her because she gets back in her races anyway. You always want to draw in close but it’s not a great problem for her.”
The timing shouldn’t be a worry as she (Lonely Orphan) is being floated down today with Fickle Folly to Rosehill. “Then we’ll leave when we need to get out to Canterbury. She’ll be right, she’s good traveller.”
Lonely Oprhan earned her Sydney trip courtesy of a brilliant win at Armidale last time out. She came from a long way back to mow down her opposition and has done well since on the training track.
“She’s good as gold,” Jeffriess said. “Seems to be her old self.” Winner of five of her 28 starts she has amassed $92,725 in prizemoney. A win or a second would propel her through the $100,000 prizemoney barrier when she contests tonight’s $40,000 #atheraces Benchmark 73 Handicap (1900m).
Sudden Blitz is coming off a sixth at Gunnedah but won a Class 2 at Coonabarabran three starts back for Melissa Dennett. A six-year-old brown gelding son of War Pass he has amassed $75,495 in prizemoney from three wins and six placings in 22 starts. Blaike McDougall claims 2kg when they jump from barrier 10.
Stablemate, Allusive Beauty ($8.60) jumps from barrier three in the Allsopp Signs Fillies & Mares Maiden Plate (1200m) at Tamworth today. Sue Grills also has Into temptation ($101) in that same race while stablemates, Kadarchi (R1-$2.60) and Under The Thumb (R6-$1.95 fav), fly the stable flag.
Under The Thumb has had two runs back from a spell, returning with a good second at Grafton and a gallant third in a Class 3 Highway Handicap in Sydney. A five-year-old bay gelding son of Falvelon he has won three of his 15 starts for just $50,000 in prizemoney.
He has drawn eight out of 10 today with Peter Graham on board while Fickle Folly will have Robert Thompson reuniting at Randwick and jumping the four-year-old daughter of Nicconi from barrier 11.