Phil Sweeney is no stranger to Carrathool, with the Jerilderie trainer always making the trip to the popular Southern Districts racing meeting.
He’s trained his fair share of Carrathool winners too, and Sweeney will have four racing at their meeting on Saturday, including Bezazzalled and Beaujeen in the $22,000 Carrathool Cup.
“They are good non-TAB horses and we have kept them ticking over in trials, so they are both ready for this race,” Sweeney said.
“We have given them numerous trials to keep them right and they are going pretty good and all we need now is to draw a barrier.”
Bezazzalled is a nine-year-old that has started 53 times for five wins and 19 placings, and he will be first-up from a 10-week let-up.
He finished third last time out in the Hay Cup, and he’s a proven campaigner in this class of race.
“Bezazzalled should go well; he is just a tough horse, and you need a tough horse for the Carrathool Cup,” Sweeney said.
Beaujeen, which will also resume from a 10-week let-up, is another nine-year-old, with the Mossman mare starting 71 times for nine wins and 15 placings, and Sweeney hopes to book an apprentice to ride her in the Carrathool feature.
“Beaujeen is a good kids horse, and she goes exceptional for kids,” Sweeney said.
“Tyler Schiller won on her, and a lot of kids have learned a bit on her, and we’ll see who we can get to ride her.”
If the Carrathool Cup field holds up, with the likes of Would Be King, Northernero, and Casino Mondial nominated, Sweeney believes it will be a very hard race to win.
“It’s going to be a tough race, but what brings it back to square one is what horses handle the dirt and what handles the heat,” Sweeney said.
“Both of mine have won on the dirt and they are only 100km from Carrathool.”
Sweeney will have Magic Jack racing in either the 1000m Class One Handicap or 1000m Benchmark 50 Handicap, and Zofferella in the 1200m Benchmark 50 Handicap.
“I’ve kept Magic Jack ticking over because he is owned out that way, and I think he is my best chance of the lot of them; he ran super at Albury the other day,” Sweeney said.
As far as jockeys for each of his gallopers, Sweeney wasn’t sure who will ride his quartet at the time of going to print.
“I’ve decided to sit on my hands and I’m not sure,” Sweeney said.
“A lot have said it will be hot, so I’m not sure who will be there, and that will be a problem for Thursday morning.”
While racing will take centre stage, there will be plenty of entertainment off-track during and after the races.
The Jackaroo Dash and and Jillaroo Sprint is always popular for the racegoers, with youngsters looking for bragging rights on the track.
The Wobbly Boot will be entertaining racegoers with live music from 7pm onwards, while fashions, socialising, and plenty of food, drink, and entertainment will be part and parcel of one of NSW’s most iconic race days.