Graeme Brooker will be looking to add another country cup to his mantlepiece on Saturday with the in-form Plectrum contesting the Carinda Cup.
The eight-year-old is in career-best form, having won two of his last three, which includes a last-start victory in the Walgett Cup on June 18.
The Baradine-based trainer explained that it was a good win, with jockey Chelsea Ings leading all the way in the 1400m Benchmark 74 event.
“It was really good. Going into Cobar, he hadn’t run for 10 weeks because Binnaway got rained out, and he ran midfield, but he didn’t disgrace himself,” Brooker said,
“After that, it was about a month between runs when we went to Walgett, and Chelsea rode him good and led all the way.”
Brooker knew the eight-year-old was going to run a good race for connections once they entered the mounting yard at Walgett.
“Out in the mounting yard, he was fired up and pulling me around and you could tell he was right on song,” Brooker said.
“Normally he stands there all nice and quiet, and I will put the blinkers on and away he goes, but he was on his toes and pulling me around and he was there to race.”
The Pluck gelding had never previously won past 1200m, and Brooker thought he might struggle over the seven furlongs at Walgett, but he started a $6.50 chance and proved too good in the end, winning by 1.57 lengths from Ocean Hero (Jodi Worley, $4.60) and Chesty (Jake Pracey-Holmes, $8).
“He just jumped and led all the way,” Brooker said.
“I thought he might have stopped about 150m out, because that was his first time over 1400m, but it was very impressive, and Chelsea gave him a good ride.”.
Brooker admitted that Saturday’s Carinda Cup would be a much tougher assignment, but he said Plectrum would give it a good go when carrying the minimum weight in the $12,000 feature.
“Carinda is 1400m again, but it is a lot harder race, and the top weight (Larynx for Brett Thompson) is a very good horse,” Brooker said.
“We drew gate seven, but he will come in one or two because of scratchings and he will jump with the other horse (Larynx) on the inside of him, and he might be a bit quicker, but we will try and go for the lead and see what happens.”
Plectrum does seem to love the dirt tracks, and with Carinda in good order ahead of Saturday’s meeting, Brooker said the old stager would be at home on the surface.
“He loves the dirt tracks, and Carinda is a bit like Walgett, and the track looks very good, so we are excited to see how we go,” Brooker said.
Carinda’s six-race-card has attracted 44 acceptors, and the club is preparing for a bumper meeting after being forced to abandon meetings in 2020 and 2021.