By Ray Hickson
Plans were set in place months ago for Sweet Victory to be ready to win at Saturday’s Rosehill meeting second-up and trainer Mark Newnham would be well pleased with how the cards have fallen.
Prior to her slashing first-up fourth over 1200m at Randwick last month, Newnham said the race that has become the TAB Rewards Handicap (1500m) would suit her ideally.
“This was always her target second-up so she’ll get there in good order,’’ he said.
“She went fantastically first-up. I’m pleased to see we’ve had a bit of rain since then, she likes the edge off the track.
“Now that were into June and the tracks have been softened up a bit with the rain we have had she’s not going to run into a firm track so it’ll be perfect ground.’’
Newnham forecast an eye-catching first-up run from Sweet Victory and that’s what he received.
The four-year-old turned last and wide and then reeled off a race best 33.50 for her last 600m, and the fastest last 200m of 11.33 (Punter's Intelligence), to finish fourth behind Charlayne.
Sweet Victory's first-up fourth at Randwick on May 25
In a wide TAB market, Sweet Victory was the $4.40 favourite on Thursday.
The Newnham stable has been very much in form in recent weeks and so far in June has produced seven winners and three placings from 15 runners.
Front-running three-year-old Quackerjack will be on the seven day back up from his win over a mile at Randwick as he steps up in trip in the Tab.com.au Handicap (1800m) and is again a warm favourite.
With Josh Parr out through a knee injury, Jay Ford has picked up the Quackerjack ride while Sam Clipperton partners Sweet Victory.
You can read more of Newnham’s thoughts on Quackerjack here.
Honest filly Blazing Miss is coming off a breakthrough win at Canterbury earlier this month and Newnham hopes she takes the confidence out of that into the Australian Turf Club Handicap (1100m).
“She’s toughed it out well, it was good to see her put her head in front and want it,’’ he said.
“She’s been a bit stiff that she’s run into good company her whole career.
“There’s good form all around here but you’re a bit relieved to see her cross the line first.’’
Some of those horses Newnham alludes to are the likes of Exceedance, Amercement, Accession and Castelvecchio so the jump out of maiden grade isn’t such a concern.
Robbie Dolan has retained the ride on Blazing Miss ($5.50) and Sydney’s leading apprentice sits just three wins shy of reducing his claim to 1.5kg. Dolan recently outrode his provincial claim.