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Rhythm Hits Sydney

Talented galloper Rhythm To Spare (pictured) makes his Sydney debut on Saturday – the hopefully Doncaster Handicap bound four-year-old taking his place in one of the day’s feature events, the Group 2 Ajax Stakes.

Currently 53rd in order for next month’s big mile, Rhythm To Spare has drawn nicely on Saturday – due to jump from barrier six for champion hoop Glen Boss.
And we are expecting a bold showing.

“He comes off a good enough first up run,” Michael Moroney said – noting that the gelding’s sectionals when resuming with a Flemington sixth a couple of weeks ago were sound.

Settling midfield on that day – in a race that was run to suit the on-pacers – Rhythm To Spare was not far away in sixth and Moroney has been delighted with his progression since.

“He has improved a fair bit,” he said, adding that with just 53kg on Saturday, Rhythm To Spare “looks well in at the weights.”

Meanwhile we have a busy day at Sandown with six runners kicking off with stayer Surpass in the Burbank Homes Handicap.

Just behind the placegetters in both the Hobart and Launceston Cups, Surpass has – says Moroney “come through his Tasmanian trip well.”

“A bit of rain about would help him but he likes Sandown and he has a good record at the 2100m.”

“It looks to be a reasonable race but we are really happy with him.”

To jump from barrier five, Surpass will be ridden by Jordan Childs who has a good affinity with him – two rides, two wins.

Next up for Ballymore is Our Validiva who makes his Australian debut in the Telstra Dandenong Handicap.

“He is a nice horse who we hope to get to the South Australian Derby,” Moroney said of the Don Eduardo gelding.

“The draw (barrier 4 for Michael Walker) helps as he has good gate speed. He can sit in the first four and enjoy a nice run.”

The one query, Moroney warned, is that Our Validiva is still a little on the immature side – “he will mature into a very nice four-year-old,” he said.

Perhaps the best of our weekend chances lines up in the Surdex Steel Handicap – the smart miler Bishops Castle faring nicely since his return from Tasmania where he ran a couple of nice races at Listed level.

“We are really happy with him,” Moroney enthused, “and if I had to name one of our’s with a chance at nice odds this weekend he would be it.”

“His work here during the week was sensational and we have always thought of him as a Group level horse.”

Luke Currie takes the ride on the O’Reilly four-year-old who has drawn barrier six.

There will be a flurry of activity before the running of the Noble Park Plate with Ballymore saddling up three runners – Visiyani, Picture Editor and Muirfield.

And we have been pleased with all three.

Drawn barrier 13 with Michael Walker aboard, the imported Visiyani makes his Australian debut.

“It is hard get a line on him as he is a casual track worker but his European form is very good,” said Moroney, “and he looks to have acclimatized quite well.”

Fellow import Picture Editor has already proven his worth locally with two wins for the stable and Moroney is confident that the best is still to come for the lightly raced six-year-old who took a while to find his feet in Australia.

“He is finally settling in and I think this will be his best preparation yet,” he said, adding that “he has come on nicely since being gelded.”

Muirfield meanwhile is also impressing – “he looks the best he has ever looked.”
Having his first run since the spring, the Don Eduardo six-year-old has performed well in jump-outs at Flemington.

“He can pull out a run fresh – especially if there happens to be some rain about.”

Sunday is another busy day for the stable with three runners at Geelong beginning with promising stayer Famechon who is having his first run since contesting the VRC Derby.

“He has struck a reasonable maiden, but he is reasonable horse himself.”

“He has been a lot more tractable as a gelding and he won’t stay a maiden for long.”

A couple races later Space steps up to 2400m and we are hoping for an improved showing with a gear change.

“He has wanted to lay in which is costing him a winning chance,” Moroney explained, “so we have added a one-eyed blinker and it has really made a difference on the track.”

“He only has to bring his track work performance to the races to prove competitive.”

Suspicious Minds – should she get a run as emergency – is our final runner for the weekend.

Boasting consistent form in New Zealand, the Alamosa filly makes her local debut and we are looking forward to seeing how she performs.

“She has had a bit of a long season but we are hoping to get her through to the South Australian Oaks.”

“There is not a lot of her,” Moroney added, “but she has got talent.”

[21 Mar 14]

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