Sleepy to make further claim for cup spot

After a slashing first up run in last week's Avon City Ford Cup, hopes are high in regards to another strong performance from Sleepy Tripp in this year's Methven Cup. After beginning well from the unruly last week, he settled 4 back on the markers. When Franco Ledger was left flatfooted at the 400m, those following him - Four Starzzz Flash and Sleepy Tripp - were greatly inconvenienced. However, once John was able to find some clear air in the straight the old fella really let down, finishing just 1/2 neck from Franco Ledger, in 4th place. "I was pretty stoked with him," was the reaction from John after the race. "Did you see the ground he's made up!" 

Sleepy Tripp's storming finish 1st up in the Avon City Ford Cup

Tomorrow's race is crucial for two reasons. It is another opportunity to show that he has shrugged off his stand start hoodoo that has dogged previous preparations and a forward showing would also be beneficial for his cup ranking (up to 18th after last week's race). John didn't think that the grass track would present any real challenges. "He's run 2nd in the Green Mile here last year, so he should be all good to go." While proven free-for-allers in Four Starzzz Flash, Jason Rulz and Fly Like An Eagle appear the hardest to beat, stablemate Phantom Grin could be worth a wee nibble also. "Yea it was a good run by him last week (behind Field Officer). He's got good manners and staying appears his forte so it wouldn't surprise me to see him put in a good run." He'll be driven in this race by Matthew Williamson.

In all the stable have the 5 runners going round. Robyn's Raider steps out again in Race 7. He was expected to produce a forward showing last week, but after leading throughout compounded in the straight to run 7th. "Put that one down to driver error," said John. "He was first up after a decent spell and we have just run along way too quick." (NB Winner Locharburn was just 0.1 second outside Bit Of A Legend's NZ record for a 3yr old). "This field is definitely a drop back from last week, so if he steps and finds a nice pozzie, he'll be very competitive this time."

The final two runners for the day are Rome's Burning and Blazin N Cullen in Race 9. It is only a small field, but both must be accorded some chance. "Blaze has gone super in his last two," said John. "He was late getting clear two starts ago and got flattened last time. He produced a nice trial run on Monday at Rangiora so is set to go. Rome's Burning's formline doesn't look flash, but he has had excuses. He made costly mistakes in two of his runs (was going like a winner 3 starts ago when breaking), and then last time he's taken on some real smart ones. He can step real good when he's in the mood so is not the worst hope thats for sure."      

Posted: Sat 05 Oct 2013