By Mark Brassel
A cast-off from Sydney’s biggest stable is certain to step out as one of the top fancies in Friday’s Riverview Hotel $38,000 Murwillumbah Cup (1530m).
Liberty Island is now prepared on the Gold Coast by Bruce Hill who took over the training of the horse from Chris Waller. The six-year-old has raced 14 times for Hill winning two races and filling placings on three occasions.
Last time out Liberty Island fought on gamely to win a class five event (1650m) at Doomben on August 16.
“He’s flying at the moment,” Hill declared. “He’s in form and the 1530 metres at Murwillumbah will suit him better than the 1650 at Doomben.”
Hill is also looking at a start in the Cup with Bodega Negra who was due to run in race 5 (1350m) at Doomben on Saturday, his first run since March.
“He’s trialled twice and is pretty forward,” Hill said prior to yesterday’s run. “I will be backing him up six days later at Murwillumbah – he’s loves being backed up in a short space of time.”
Hill’s third Murwillumbah Cup runner is likely to be Montrer Dame, a mare that has had just one run since July 15 finishing fourth at Arena Salon on the Gold Coast (1400m).
“She had a short break as she had a bung eye. Her run the other day was good and she will be very competitive.”
Hill also has Toronto Flyer and Winning Accord in the nominations but said he will view the weights with the former, while the latter is a “50-50” chance of heading down.
Hill said Media Maid will be his only representative in the other feature event, the $28,000 Tursa Employment & Training Murwillumbah Newmarket (1200m). The mare has only had one run since January, finishing seventh to Life’s Like That on the Gold Coast (900m).
“Her first-up run was very good and she has improved since,” Hill said.
*Meanwhile, Tamworth Jockey Club will host a benefit night for the family of late jockey Darren Jones this Thursday.
The event will be held at the racecourse from 6pm and is to be hosted by Sky Racing's Greg Radley.
Leading Sydney jockey Hugh Bowman and legendary former jockey Malcolm Johnston will be guest speakers on the night with tickets selling for $50 each and include finger food.
Darren Jones, 48, lost his life in a race fall at Warialda on April 8 having been a jockey for more than 30 years.
Proceeds from the benefit night will go to Darren’s wife and two young children. Donations can be made to the Darren Jones Family Appeal (BSB:932 000, Account No: 000753692).