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Outstanding could shine

By Don Farmer

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Barrier draws have not fallen very favourably for many of the best Wairarapa-trained chances at Whanganui tomorrow but should this be overcome the district could well produce a winner or two at the meeting.

One of those affected by a less than perfect draw is the promising Per Incanto gelding Outstanding in race 2, a maiden over 1340m.

Outstanding, trained at Opaki by Gerald Innes, has been gifted the 15 marble but with canny senior rider Johnathan Parkes aboard this may be less of a hindrance than it could otherwise be.

Outstanding has only stepped out twice for two tidy results, being a fourth placing at Woodville and a second at Awapuni.

On that form he appears to be at equal or better terms than any of the other runners which include two from Wairarapa, Ella Louise and Miss Hoi Polloi.

The former is returning to racing after an extensive lay-off and owner/trainer Peter Jeffcoat will be looking to see what she can do fresh up.

A big plus will be having talented apprentice Tim Johnson aboard.

Miss Hoi Polloi, prepared by Eric Johanson, is likewise returning after a modest debut at Tauherenikau back in early June.

Race 3 sees Freddy Lad attempting a third career win in what will be only five starts.

This gelding is smart which was clearly shown to be the case when he hung on grimly to beat a big field at Hastings in October.

He followed that with a gutsy fourth on the same track earlier this month and, on paper, should be right in this.

Opaki trainer Kylie Little has two entered at the meeting, both with excellent chances of getting some of the cash.

Lucyinrio will line up in race 4 and has been knocking at the door at her last two outings, which were preceded by a win.

She finished third on both Hastings starts and has Mark Hills aboard.

Trisha Lea will represent the Little stable in race 5 and must surely get a kinder run than she did at Waverley on November 13.

Anything that could go wrong on that day did.

Trisha Lea was slow out of the gates and had to be firmly restrained before clipping heels and blundering near the 600m.

After the race a vet found the mare had a slight cut in her left nostril and an abrasion on the left hind leg.

Better luck and the services of Chris ( Magic) Johnson could tip the scales in her favour tomorrow.

A race rival for Trisha Lea will be Tauherenikau galloper Em Kay Pops whose last start effort at Woodville wasn’t too bad.

She has had plenty of chances to clear maidens and would be at good odds but should not be discarded.

The big race of the day will be the Wanganui Cup and in this Wairarapa will be represented by Blathwayt.

Now a seven-year-old Blathwayt, trained by Alby MacGregor, had his career interrupted by injury earlier on but has come back and appears to be slowly regaining form.

A fourth at Awapuni late last month was followed by a reasonable effort at Waverley and with a bit of weight off his back tomorrow Blathwayt could show even more improvement.

Gobstopper is trainer Andrew Campbell’s sole entrant at the meeting, lining up in the last of the day.

The son of Tavistock has won his last two in a proverbial canter even though he took it on himself both times to make things a trifle tough.

At Tauherenikau last month he shied and went off stride near the 1500m and again at the 1400m but managed to get it together and won by five lengths.

Taken north he lined up at Te Rapa on October 24 and won again, quite comfortably despite knuckling over as the field jumped.

He has to be a serious win contender tomorrow.

Remaining Wairarapa runners at the meeting are Mwaadan in race 1 which battled on for fourth in heavy ground at Awapuni last time out and Strolling Vagabond in race 6, who has drawn out in the grandstand but is a course winner and could spring a surprise.

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