By Rod Fuller
With Just Dreaming racing at Royal Randwick on Saturday, the chances of Bonne Cheval saluting in the $50,000 De Bortoli Wines Sprint at Port Macquarie on cup day have certainly been enhanced.
Coffs Harbour training icon, Brett Bellamy, has placed the Murphy’s Blu Boy mare to advantage for this prestigious feature having commenced the campaign with success in a Benchmark 60 during the hometown carnival after a lengthy break.
The progression has included a solid victory at Lismore followed by a creditable sixth in high class fillies and mares benchmark race at the Gold Coast in late August. The most recent run was in the feature sprint at Lismore called the Untamed during the cup carnival where punters sent her out as equal favourite.
Long-time stable jockey Stephen Traecey extricated into the clear on the point of the home turn and raced away in the straight for an impressive win against good quality opposition. Traecey has again been engaged for Friday’s assignment and with 25 career starts for 7 wins and 7 placings, the mare looks well placed in this highlight race.
Bellamy has really found the key to Bonne Cheval and success would be a fantastic reward to the Wood and White families, who have been successful clients of the stable.
Former champion harness driver and now Thoroughbred leviathan Kim Waugh makes her regular journey along the highway from Wyong with Oxford Poet, who has been given topweight in the event.
The Dylan Thomas gelding has stake earnings in advance of half a million dollars and is coming off a Doomben win in July followed by an even run in the Spring Preview at Rosehill. With success in two recent Central Coast barrier trials in preparation for the feature sprint outing, the stage is set for a great race.
Other horses to be considered include Escebee for trainer, Brett Cavanough, who has made a real success of his recent move from Albury to Scone. The stable has been prepared to travel long distances around the state and place their horses to advantage, so the consistent Written Tycoon gelding is certain to be well considered.
Newcastle-trained galloper Salerno and the local hope Prince Mayted round out the chances in an event that should provide an added bonus for racing action on Carlton Draught Port Macquarie Cup day.