The seven-year-old kicked off this preparation racing at Canterbury, finishing fifth and fourth respectively in tougher 1200m and 1250m Benchmark 72 Handicaps before finishing seventh in a 1300m Benchmark 80 Handicap at Wagga on July 5.
Assault’n’Bathory will run as 59.5kg top-weight in the 1600m race and his Goulburn trainer was confident he would run the mile journey out strongly.
“I think he is well placed,” Seib said.
“His form is pretty strong, there have been quite a few winners out of those Canterbury races he was in earlier this preparation.
“Plus, he is a bit older and looking for a mile and hopefully he gets beyond that.”
Winona Costin jumps aboard the winner of five races and Seib hinted that the pair would be pressing forward in a bid to run the opposition off their feet.
“Hopefully he has them chasing and the race is sealed up on the turn,” Seib laughed.
“We will just let him roll along, Winona knows the horse very well – she did all the hard yards on him, all the grunt work and won a (TAB) Highway on him and he is as much her horse as anyone else.”
Narrandera is rated a heavy 10 for tomorrow’s Cup meeting and while the Murtajill gelding has won three times in the soft and once in the heavy, Seib was wary that a chopped-up course could be tougher for the front runners later in the meeting.
“With the rain and heavy conditions, every track races differently and it is always in the back of your mind whether a horse will handle it,” Seib said.
“Being a front runner and late in the day on a heavy 10, you could start to question if the rail is the place to be, but he is assisted by the fact they haven’t raced much on the track, and it should hold up pretty well.”
The 2021 Narrandera Cup looks a good betting race, but 2020 winner Gunga Din, who is well in the market, looks set to be scratched.
The Keith Dryden galloper doesn’t handle the wet and the Canberra trainer said he was 95% sure he would scratch after last night’s rain.
For those wanting to attend tomorrow’s meeting, full race day activities will go ahead, with local and metro bookies, a bar and a kiosk with hot food.
There will be no fashions on the field though, and patrons must wear approved masks and sign in upon entry to the track.