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Bon Amis All Set To Claim First-Up Victory

By Gary Harley

Undefeated Newcastle four-year-old Bon Amis resumes from a five-month spell at the Newcastle race meeting on Saturday and his astute trainer Jason Deamer claims the gelding is fit enough to win despite no lead up barrier trial.

Bon Amis returns in the 900 metre class 2 Handicap and he clashes with a trio of smart restricted class sprinters. Back in April, Bon Amis won a Newcastle barrier trial by five lengths before running down Latin Boy in a Cessnock Maiden on May 2.

Latin Boy won four races on the trot recently, including one at Warwick Farm. In his second and only start the four-year-old raced greenly in the closing stages when he won at Muswellbrook on a heavy track.

Deamer said from his stables on Thursday that he didn’t believe fitness is a concern over the 900 metre course: “I ride him in work and he is fit enough to run 900 meters first up. I don’t like trialling my horses unless I have to. It is a nice race for Bon Amis and he has an ideal barrier.

"If the rain comes it won’t affect his chances as that was a very heavy track he won on at Muswellbrook. I don’t get carried away, but Bon Amis should eventually reach midweek metropolitan class.” Deamer said.

Deamer has 11 in work at Newcastle and he has a very good strike rate. Of course, he trained Lovely Jubly the mother of super star Chautauqua. Lovely Jubly won a Gold Coast Magic Millions and two Group 1’s in Brisbane the Sires & TJ Smith. Bon Amis will strike strong opposition from Envy of All, Oakfield Time and All Stand.

Kris Lees has accepted with seven of his team and in race order they are Heat Haze (race 1), Lomazzo (race 2), Wallangarra (race 3), Valeria (race 5), Envy of All (race 6) with Munjai and Kandy set to do battle in race 7.

Wallangarra, Envy of All and Kandy are short priced favourites in early markets. Wallangarra is an English stayer part owned by NJC Chairman Geoff Barnett and Director Robert Dan, Peter Brown, Kris Lees and others.

After two starts in Australia he lines up in the 1850 metre Class 2 Handicap on Saturday. Lees sent the five-year-old to Port Macquarie on October 7 and he bolted in to win an 1812 metre Class 1 Handicap. Robert Thompson rode Wallangarra in his first Australian start at Newcastle at the Cup Carnival and the Cessnock boy hops aboard again on Saturday.

Envy of All, a recent addition to the Lees stable, has had five starts all on metropolitan tracks for a win and five placings. The filly opposes Bon Amis on Saturday. Kandy could not have been more impressive than she was in winning on this track in May.

That was her only race start and she resumes in the 1200 metre Benchmark 60 Handicap. Kandy looked good when hard held and closing in late in a recent trial. Lees's unraced Lonhro filly Valeria has won two recent Beaumont trials and from barrier one she will take some beating in the 900 metre Maiden Plate.

Scone blueblood Rekindled Forge will be the shortest priced favourite of the meeting if he runs in the 1200 metre Benchmark 64 Handicap. Trainer Paul Messara has also accepted in the Randwick Highway Handicap on Saturday and the son of the great Redoute’s Choice is also favourite in that race. Rekindled Force created a big impression when he travelled wide and won on debut at Muswellbrook recently.

View the final fields with full form & race replays for Newcastle here

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