Wangaratta visitor will take some beating in Corowa Cup

Abseiler will take some beating in Saturday’s Corowa Cup. Image: Racing Photos.

With no Highway Handicap this week in Sydney, Thunderbet’s Johnny ‘Highway’ Patton has searched for a race closer to home, running his eye over the Corowa Cup (1600m).

Some very handy gallopers have won this prestigious race. 

The late Richard Freyer trained out of Corowa from 1979 and won 13 Corowa Cups. Alan Fitzgerald, who won on five of those races for Freyer, is now a trainer but doesn’t have a starter in the cup but has a runner earlier in the day.  

Hannah Williams has ridden the last two-year winners in the cup and rides Keith in tomorrow’s race. 

Wagga trainer Michael Travers has Jenni Esprit enter the race, and it’s interesting to note that he won the race in 2005 on Green Sapphire. 

So, a fair bit of history is connected to the cup and the club.  

Usually, the track suits horses on the pace that are drawn well, and if a horse is drawn out and usually gets back in its runs, they find It very hard to win. 

My on-top pick is Abseiler ($7.50), trained by Dan McCarthy at Wangaratta.  

The 5YO gelding has been off the track for a month after finishing fifth in the Sapphire Coast Cup over 2200m in early February.

Tomorrow, the Wangaratta visitor will be much better suited to the 1600m (5:1-2-2).

The Extreme Choice gelding has had one run on the track for a win in December 2022. 

On that occasion, he beat Lensman, who won a Highway early in February at Rosehill. 

He is drawn very well in barrier one. Apprentice Rose Hammond, who can claim two kilos, takes the ride, and he drops six kilograms on his previous start. 

He will get the perfect run just in behind and be very hard to beat.

My second pick is Persian Dancer ($8.50).

The 4YO is absolutely flying and was a last-start winner at Wagga over 1800m in a very fast time (1:49.72). 

Before that, she was racing in Highways in Sydney and having no luck, racing wide on both occasions at Royal Randwick and Rosehill Gardens. 

The Choisir mare has drawn barrier 14 for this, but he will come in a couple after scratchings. With Danny Beasley on board, I expect him to go forward and will probably lead. 

Beasley has had two starts on the Wagga galloper, trained by Gary Colvin. He stays on board, and I expect the pair to be in the finish.

My third pick is Snap Book ($4.80).

I love this horse as he hardly ever runs a bad race. 

Trained by Donna Scott at Albury, his latest start was in the SDRA Country Championship, where he was drawn to the car park. 

On jumping, he began awkwardly and was hampered shortly after. Passing the 250m, he shifted inwards across the heels of a weakening runner. 

Tomorrow will be a different story as Kayla Nisbet goes on board for the first time.

He has drawn barrier four and he loves this track and distance and drops one kilogram on the previous start. He will get the perfect run and drops in class, so he should be around the mark.

This week’s each-way play this week Kiptanui ($7 & $2.40). 

I think this horse is over the odds. Yes, he has got a massive weight at 62kg, but he has been racing in much stronger company in Canberra and Sydney. 

In December, he won the Ted Ryder Cup over 1600m, where he was too strong for them, and he has a win in the 2022 Narrandera Cup next to his name. 

The combination of Trainer Matthew Dale and jockey Nick Heywood has been a great success together lately. He will give you an excellent sight for your money.

Thunderbet’s selection

  1. Abseiler ($7.50)
  2. Persian Dancer ($8.50)
  3. Snap Book ($4.80)

Each-way play: Kiptanui ($7 & $2.40)

Come and say hello

If any of our readers are going to Corowa on Saturday, please come up and say G’day to John, as Thunderbet will be fielding there tomorrow. 

Another great meeting on Saturday is the Crookwell Picnic meeting that is held at Binda. 

My tip in the Funny Hill Cup is Rock ‘N’ Tori. Good Luck.