Sprague con­vinced Dew Drop is a player in thin Pre­lude

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING - MATT JONES

IT looks as if Dew Drop has a sense of tim­ing about him as he heads into to­day’s Port Mac­quarie Cup Pre­lude (1812m) fourth-up for John Sprague.

The lo­cal horse ran very well in the same race last year and, af­ter two plac­ings and a last-start win, this time in he’s look­ing like a ma­jor player in a fairly thin pre­lude.

“We threw him in the deep end last year and he ran third in the race so we’re hav­ing an­other crack and we’re an­other year older and an­other year wiser,” Sprague said.

“My old boss Glen Hodge had a look at him a few years ago and told me he’d end up be­ing a good stayer so I’ve hung on to him and he’s al­ways run me nice races with­out hit­ting his mark.”

The five-year-old has only won three races from 32 starts but he’s a stayer so those stats are a lit­tle mis­lead­ing as he’s taken time to turn into the fin­ished prod­uct.

From bar­rier three, Dew Drop will get his chance and has won twice at the track.

“He was a big baby and hadn’t got around to it (win­ning),’’ Sprague said. “You’ve got to sea­son the stay­ers and, when there’s not too many races for them, you’ve got to place them where you can.

“It’s not as deep as the Port Cup will end up and he’ll have to run first or sec­ond to get into that race. He’ll have to run a bot­tler in the Pre­lude.”

Sprague races The Kroc in the fourth race over 1506m and he, too, is look­ing to pro­duce a peak per­for­mance this time in af­ter two ground­ing runs where he’s shown im­prove­ment each time.

“I’m ex­pect­ing a good run out of him,” the trainer said.

“Our jockey (Luke Rolls) said he should run a good race next start af­ter need­ing a cou­ple of runs.

“He ran well last start and we’re ex­pect­ing some­thing out of him this time.”

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