Robert Price is delighted in the change in handicapping policy, which has allows Budderoo Knight back to provincial racing at Kembla Grange on Saturday.
The seven-year-old has had five of six wins at country track but had got too high in the benchmark after a second at Canterbury last preparation to race away from the metropolitan area.
“We were getting forced to go to the city with him and he just wasn’t good enough to win there,” Price said. “He is a handy country sprinter, which was paid the price for winning at places like Moruya."
“Once the policy change and he dropped in the benchmark, it gave him another chance and I think will have found a good race for him on Saturday.”
Budderoo Knight has 59.5kg in the Gwenda Markwell Handicap and is ready for a peak run.
“We actually got him ready the Berry Cup day at Kembla a couple of weeks ago, because the owners always go to the races that day, but the meeting was washed out,” Price said. “It has worked out well for him because he is much better on a firm track and he gets that in Saturday."
“His first-up win at Moruya was very good and he wasn’t disgraced [when fourth at Warwick Farm] in town the other day. I think it is a race where he is very well placed and I expect to go pretty close.”
Saturday’s Kembla meeting celebrates the premiership winners from last season with races named in honour of Markwell as leading trainer, Jeff Penza, the leading jockey and Brock Ryan, who took out the apprentice title for a second time.
Kembla horse of the year Dashley Dubh also had a race named in his honour.