Ki­wia to be king of the 'bool

Weir has sights on a fifth War­rnam­bool Cup

The Sportsman Special Issue - - Front page - BY ADAM SHERRY

THE Dar­ren Weir sta­ble is chas­ing their fifth suc­ces­sive War­rnam­bool Cup to­mor­row and are lean­ing to­wards Ki­wia as their lead­ing con­tender for the fea­ture.

While Rac­ing Man­ager Si­mon McCartin said a case can be made for each of their four runners, it’s Ki­wia that sits at the top of the tree.

“Dar­ren has had the War­rnam­bool Cup in mind for Ki­wia this cam­paign and he is build­ing nicely with each run to­wards his goal,” Si­mon McCartin said.

THE Dar­ren Weir sta­ble is chas­ing their fifth suc­ces­sive War­rnam­bool Cup to­mor­row and are lean­ing to­wards Ki­wia as their lead­ing con­tender for the fea­ture.

While Rac­ing Man­ager Si­mon McCartin said a case can be made for each of their four runners, it’s Ki­wia that sits at the top of the tree.

“On their day and with con­di­tions to suit, all of them are ca­pa­ble of win­ning this race,” Si­mon McCartin said.

“Dar­ren has had the War­rnam­bool Cup in mind for Ki­wia this cam­paign and he is build­ing nicely with each run to­wards his goal.

“His run at Caulfield last start was quite good. The slow speed was against him and he was blocked for a run be­fore flash­ing home to run sec­ond un­der Brad Raw­iller.”

Damien Lane re­unites with Ki­wia to­mor­row hav­ing won the Group 3 Coongy Hand­i­cap on the son of Re­set last spring.

Join­ing Ki­wia in the Cup is 2016 War­rnam­bool Cup win­ner Master Of Arts, Gal­lic Chief­tain and Yogi.

“We are happy with the way Master of Arts is rac­ing. Hope­fully there is a bit more rain which will help his chances as he likes to get his toe into the ground a bit,” McCartin said.

“He had con­di­tions to suit to win the Man­ion Cup at Rose­hill when the track came up a Soft 7 and from an ideal draw, he got a lovely run just be­hind the lead­ers.

“At his next start in the Chair­man’s Hand­i­cap at Rand­wick, the track was a Good 4 which just didn’t suit him.

“He’s got as bit of weight to carry (60kg) but has drawn nicely in gate 4 and should get a lovely run.”

Im­ported five-year- old Gal­lic Chief­tain heads into the War­rnam­bool Cup as a last start win­ner at Flem­ing­ton last Wed­nes­day.

“It was a re­ally good win by Gal­lic Chief­tain at Flem­ing­ton last week,” McCartin said

“Damien ( Lane) gave him a lovely ride and he backs up here but is fit and well.

“He has got a bit of weight to carry (59.5kg) and has drawn wide. He will need some luck from out there but is a happy horse at the mo­ment.”

The fourth mem­ber of the quar­tet is pro­gres­sive geld­ing Yogi.

“It’s been a bit of a rush to get him to the Cup and he might be a run short,” said McCartin.

“He has fin­ished just be­hind the placeget­ters in two runs back from a spell.

“Craig ( Wil­liams) was happy his ef­fort when fourth at Terang last start and sticks with him to­mor­row. He has drawn to get a very eco­nom­i­cal run from bar­rier 3.”

The fea­ture event of the day is the Grand An­nual Steeplechase (5500m) and the Weir sta­ble is rep­re­sented by Now And Zen with McCartin giv­ing the geld­ing a good chance.

“He is taking on some good jumpers to­mor­row but he is in re­ally good shape and we have been look­ing forward to get­ting him back to the ‘bool.”

The nine-year- old goes into the Grand An­nual hav­ing been run­ner-up at his past three out­ings in­clud­ing a 3.1len sec­ond to Zed Em in the Von Doussa at Oak­bank three starts back.

Last start, the son of Zenno Rob Roy was a neck sec­ond to Monarch Chimes at Pak­en­ham.

To­mor­row, Now And Zen again tack­les those same two ri­vals and has the weight ad­van­tage in his favour this time round giv­ing him the op­por­tu­nity to turn the ta­bles.

He meets Zed Em 4kg better and Mu­si­cal Chimes 2kg better at the weights.

Now And Zen (white blaze) will con­test the Grand An­nual Steeplechase.

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