The final meeting of the 2020/21 NSW Picnic Racing Association season will be held at Gunnedah on Saturday and for some runners, this will be their last chance to qualify for the $50,000 NSW Picnic Champion Series final.
Peter Reynolds has two gallopers in action with series leader Drummed Out (28 points) drawing gate one in the 1000m Open Trophy Handicap, funnily enough coming up again 2020 series winner, the Mark Schmetzer trained Military Bay (5 points) – the Scone galloper is all but out of consideration for a place in the final.
Reynolds has Michael Johnston on both of his charges, and Nevada Sunrise (21 points) is set to jump from gate four in the 1400m Class Two Handicap and his appearance will seal his place in the all-important top 12.
Heading into the meeting, 18 points is currently the cut-off for the top 12 that will race in the $50,000 final at Coonamble on October 10, and there are a handful of chances racing at Gunnedah that sit just outside of this bracket.
Dubbo trainer Brett Robb will take four runners to the races and there is particular interest in two gallopers pushing for a spot in the top 12.
Lucienne (16 points) contests the 1600m Open Trophy Handicap and Combogolong (15 points) will look to make it six wins from his last seven starts when jumping from gate two in the 1400m Class Two Handicap – both runners will be partnered with leading picnic hoop, Maddy Wright.
Another Dubbo trainer in Clint Lundholm is trying his chances with Nepenthes (16 points) jumping from gate five in the same 1400m Class Two Handicap.
A strong showing with Will Stanley in the saddle will all but seal a place in the top 12.
The Connie Greig trained Equilibrium is on 15 points and can sneak into the top 12 but the Dubbo galloper will need to finish in the top two or three in the 1600m Open Trophy Handicap.
Will Stanley takes the ride and connections draw gate three.
The six-race picnic program kicks off at 11.30am and although there are no crowds, Southern Cross Bet will be fielding at the meeting, meaning owners can still have a flutter on their ponies.
For full Gunnedah fields, click here.