Hawkesbury Race Club officials are optimistic Tuesday’s meeting can proceed if there is a break in the weather today.
The track is currently a 'Heavy 10' following 37mls of rain in the last 24 hours and 65mls overall in the last couple of days.
“Even though it is a Heavy 10, there is no surface water on the track,” course manager Rick Johnston said this morning. “The rain stopped about 8.30am, and we certainly don’t want any more.
“Racing NSW Stewards will have a look at the track early this afternoon, so we will know more after that inspection.”
Hawkesbury trainer Matt Vella is undecided whether to start his promising filly Never Second ($3.80 on TAB) in the Mounties Group F&M Benchmark 64 Handicap (1100m) if tomorrow’s meeting does go ahead.
“Never Second is also nominated for Gosford on Thursday, but I’m unsure how the situation is with that track,” he said. “I’ll just wait and see.
“I feel Never Second will handle the ground here, but I’m very wary of Peter and Paul Snowden’s filly Sahra ($3.20 favourite).
“She was placed on heavy ground at Rosehill Gardens in July before having a break, and is the one we have to beat.”
Zoustar filly Never Second, raced by Sir Owen Glenn’s Go Bloodstock Australia, made an impressive debut at Gosford on October 8 when she won a Maiden Plate (1100m), overcoming her outside barrier in a field of nine.
Tommy Berry rode her then but hasn’t taken mounts at tomorrow’s meeting and Jason Collett has been booked.
Never Second was initially prepared by Ciaron Maher and David Eustace at their Sydney base at Warwick Farm, but didn’t race for the duo before being switched to Vella at Hawkesbury, where he manages Glenn Haven Farm for Sir Owen. Collett rode the filly in her first trial (742m) at Randwick on November 12 last year.
Fellow Hawkesbury trainer Brad Widdup also is uncertain about running his two acceptors, debutante Maddison’s Missile ($11 for the Lander Toyota Maiden Handicap, 1100m) and Vulpine ($4.40 in Never Second’s race).
“It’s going to be a very heavy track, and both horses at this stage are doubtful,” Widdup said.
Last season’s Hawkesbury premiership-winning jockey Rachel King has been booked for Maddison’s Missile, and 1.5kg claimer Brock Ryan for Vulpine, who has won on heavy ground at Kembla Grange but hasn’t started since being placed on the Kensington track in July.
The rail is out 3m from the 1100m to 400m, and in the TRUE position for the remainder.
PAUL JOICE'S SELECTIONS
RACE 1: UNAMERICAN, Appetizing, Moon Panther.
RACE 2: SIR ROCKET, Aeecee Vinco, Roman Wolf.
RACE 3: WINNING BUSINESS, Lucky To Win, Maddison’s Missile.
RACE 4: SEVERITY, Harapan, Edmond.
RACE 5: SAHRA, Never Second, Vulpine.
RACE 6: ANOTHER ALIBI, Broadside Armour, Sea Echo.
RACE 7: SEDUCTION QUEEN, Harpo Marx, Auburn Boy.
BEST: SIR ROCKET, SAHRA, SEDUCTION QUEEN