Stor­mont to fire up again

Mercury (Hobart) - - RACING - PETER STA­PLES

LIGHTLY raced six-year-old Stor­mont pro­duced a ca­reerbest ef­fort to win a class one hand­i­cap over 1400m in Launce­s­ton three weeks ago, but his trainer Rod Sey­mour says the geld­ing has im­proved since then and ex­pects him to win again tonight.

Stor­mont will line up in a class three hand­i­cap over 1600m, which is un­known ter­ri­tory. The geld­ing was first-up from a lengthy spell when he pow­ered home to de­feat Lit­tle Raven and Se­cret Gold, af­ter which his rider Bren­don McCoull de­clared the son of Red El­e­ment was “a very smart gal­loper in the mak­ing”.

“Stor­mont won well at his first start for five months and we were con­fi­dent he could win, based on his track­work lead­ing up to that race,” Sey­mour said.

“He had a strong work­ing gal­lop over 800 me­tres on Satur­day and his track­work rider, Craig Lut­trell, said he couldn’t be­lieve the horse was able to im­prove so much on what he’d shown be­fore his first-up win.

“The plan is to just keep the horse tick­ing over and place him in winnable races but we want to test him over longer trips later on. At the minute we’ll run him over 1620m a cou­ple of times to see how he goes, but it would be nice to think he would be up to be­ing com­pet­i­tive in one of the mi­nor cups dur­ing the sum­mer car­ni­val.”

Stor­mont was al­ways trav­el­ling like the win­ner last start and when McCoull called on him for the big ef­fort in the home straight he pow­ered home to win by a length.

The strong­est op­po­si­tion should come from the con­sis­tent Ocean Essence from the Adam Trinder sta­ble, likely leader Pool­side Hen­drick and last-start win­ner Snip­pety Cat, which has struck a pur­ple patch of form.

THE John Blacker-trained Triple Strip looms as an­other best bet on the eight-event pro­gram in Launce­s­ton.

Triple Strip will line up in a bench­mark 74 hand­i­cap over 1420m with Craig Ne­witt aboard and she would only need to pro­duce that form that took her to vic­tory in a bench­mark 74 in Devon­port last start to make her pres­ence felt at the busi­ness and of pro­ceed­ings.

“I couldn’t be hap­pier with Triple Strip since her last win and I be­lieve she goes bet­ter on the turf than she does on the Devon­port syn­thetic,” Blacker said.

“She won the Sires Pro­duce Stakes in Launce­s­ton two sea­sons back and while her most re­cent form in Launce­s­ton isn’t too flash, she wasn’t go­ing any­where near as well as she is now.”

THE three-year-old maiden over 1220m (race 4) boasts a lot of first-starters so pun­ters might have to tread war­ily, but on ex­posed form the Adam Trinder-trained Tough Boy should be able to fi­nally notch his first win.

Tough Boy led last start and was only run down in the last 100m, but they spaced the re­main­der of the field.

CLASSY: Stor­mont (Bren­don McCoull) wins a class one in Launce­s­ton three weeks ago.

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