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Ready for races

Saturday, 14th March, 2015

First Defence makes his 48th start today in the Sureway Employment Handicap. PICTURE: Patrick Reincke First Defence makes his 48th start today in the Sureway Employment Handicap. PICTURE: Patrick Reincke

By Patrick Reincke

With today marking the 50th anniversary of St Pats, there will be nothing in the world that will match up to the excitement, the atmosphere and the heartbreak quite like a day at the races.

It has been 50 years since Marist Boy won the first ever Outback Cup and 50 years on, St Pat’s has become a monumental event in Broken Hill’s calendar every year.

Gates will open at 10am with the first race, the Slater & Gordon Lawyers Maiden Plate, commencing at 12.50pm.

The race will act as the curtain raiser for a fine day of racing with an impressive field all in contention.

Many are favouring Kym Healy’s Choice Discovery to take out the opening race with the four-year-old gelding looking strong.

Healy will have ten horses running over the course of the day so it could be a big St Pat’s for him.

Race one also marks the race debut of It’s Up To You.

Cobar trainer Allan Prisk purchased the three-year-old filly for $100,000 last year and will be happy to watch its debut at St Pat’s.

Loudanzo in barrier seven will likely be Choice Discovery’s main challenger with some impressive results in its previous races.

Despite being scratched in three of those races, Loudanzo has managed three seconds, a third and a fourth and could be the one to snag victory.

Rondaferro and Helbarton are also a couple to look out for.

The Dr. Andrew Crossman Maiden Plate follows race one with Rodney Robb’s Cloverleaf the favourite.

Cloverleaf has performed well in its previous outings and will be tough to beat.

However, Joseph Ed, Tayler’s Daisy and Snowdust will all be hot on the four-year-old’s tail.

The Sureway Employment Handicap will also have a Rodney Robb horse as the front-runner.

With Matthew Cahill set to ride the horse, Magic Bella will be the favourite among punters for race three with the mare having won its last race.

Although its last win was at Birdsville in September of last year, Magic Bella has had a consistent run of seconds over the course of 2014 and will be one to watch.

Lucinda Brander’s Honor the Moment remains a close second with the gelding having won its last two races last year.

Wins at Wentworth and more importantly, Broken Hill, puts Honor the Moment right in contention.

Race four will be the Dr Biljana Trask Handicap which is the longest race of the day.

Run over a distance of 2200 metres, this race is not for the faint-hearted and requires an enduring mount to claim victory.

Letsgetsideways might be the one to do just that with the gelding running well in his last race at Morphettville Parks.

The four-year-old finished third in the 2400 metre race after sitting tenth at the first 800.

Cool as Hel won very recently at Mildura and should perform at the longer distance.

Both geldings are trained by Ron Daniels and will lead the way ahead of others like Lady Chora and Nothing By Half.

The Far West Hyundai Handicap marks race five of St Pats with two Kym Healy horses looking to claim victory.

Swingitlikesayers won at Port Lincoln carrying 57kgs but will have to carry 59kgs come Saturday.

Tiger Jet is the other Healy-trained horse in this race and should do well.

Additionally, be on the look-out for Rubens and Urania Belle. 

And now the race that stops the Silver City, the Clubs NSW & Keno Outback Cup.

At 4.10pm the barriers will open and they’ll be off and racing, all vying for the prestigious Golden Harp.

Barbara Joseph and Paul Jones’ Girls Own looks like the favourite with the four-year-old gelding only losing by a length in its previous race at Sapphire Coast.

Locally-owned Hereford looks favourable starting in barrier 5, while Annette Harder’s Black Barra also looks promising.

Local trainer Michael Wayman will have his hopes on Crystal Reef in barrier eight and remains confident in his six-year-old’s abilities.

On Face Value, Pretty Blonde and Brimming will be another three who should all perform well.

The Shannon Electrics Outback Stayer follows the major race and will feature a slight rivalry between two top horses.

King Rodney and Samzero both raced in the Maxwell Cooper Memorial Handicap at Kingscote in early February which saw Samzero sneak pass King Rodney by under two lengths.

Needless to say, these two will be out to settle a score.

Spirit of Flatley has run well over his past five races and will look to steal victory in the final stretch.

And to cap off the day, the XXXX Gold Outback Sprint.

The eighth and final race of the day will see a strong field all in contention with Nicole Bruggemann’s Akbar Mahal the favourite.

Having won his previous two races, Akbar Mahal will look to clench the hat-trick and beat Rodney Robb’s Uaroo along with Sarcasm and Air Comet.

The Outback Sprint will act as the final race of the day and bring St Pat’s 50th anniversary to its end just as the after-party kicks off.

It will be a day of celebration and festivity and most importantly, will make everyone in the Silver City feel, the sound of thunder.

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