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  • Writer's pictureJohn Curtis


WEDNESDAY: October 19, 2022: NATHAN Doyle is one Newcastle trainer who doesn’t mind taking his horses to Hawkesbury – and he has a good record to back it up.

With seven winners from 27 overall runners (a 26 per cent strike rate) including two from eight already in the first couple of months of the new racing year, he heads back there tomorrow keen to add to the tally.

Coming off a season best 57 winners, the young Newcastle mentor clinched his 158th career winner with Mussenphere at Muswellbrook last Monday.

He has four acceptors at Hawkesbury, and says he looks forward to competing at Hawkesbury whenever races suit his horses.

“I don’t mind going there at all,” he said this morning. “It’s an easier trip nowadays going through the tunnel off the M1 Motorway.”

Doyle has dual acceptors Edge Of Darkness and So You Battle in the Windsor RSL Provincial Maiden Plate (1300m), Bak Da Man in the Clarendon Tavern Conditional Benchmark 68 Handicap (2000m), and Vienna Rain in the Jacfin Employment Developments Midway Benchmark Handicap (1600m).

The dual acceptors and Vienna Rain are in $45,000 races - $5000 above normal provincial prizemoney.

Lee Magorrian rides Edge Of Darkness, Andrew Adkins is on So You Battle, Willie Pike has the Bak Da Mount and Doyle’s most successful rider Koby Jennings has been booked for Vienna Rain.

Former Victorian Edge Of Reward ($2.25 fixed odds favorite with, a recent newcomer to the stable, has been placed at three of his five starts, whilst So You Think filly So You Battle ($3.90 second favorite) is making her debut.

“I expected Edge Of Reward to either lead or be outside the leader when he had his first run for me at the Port Macquarie Cup carnival earlier this month, but he was a bit fidgety in the barriers and got back before finishing well to be narrowly beaten,” Doyle said.

“He is definitely a better horse up on the speed and has the race craft on So You Battle.

“She is a nice filly but still a bit raw, and I feel the 1300m suits to kick her off.

“I also accepted with her in a 1300m Maiden at the Showcase meeting at Scone on Friday, but at this stage she is going to Hawkesbury.”

So You Battle, the first foal of the unraced All American mare Gettysburgh, has trialled twice in preparation for her debut, and won a four-horse 1100m Maiden trial on the Polytrack (synthetic) at Newcastle on September 28.

Doyle is backing up five-year-old Bak Da Man ($4.80), hoping he can put his best hooves forward.

“He ran fourth at Kembla last Thursday in a Midway Benchmark 64 when the distance came back from 2000m to 16000m,” he said.

“Bak Da Man has pulled up well, so there is no problem backing up for the 2000m tomorrow.

“He was slow to begin at Kembla and gave away a decent start, but finished off well.

“Bak Da Man has been thereabouts in four runs this campaign without winning, and I would like to see him put it all together tomorrow.”

Bak Da Man’s race will be reduced to seven runners, as Travelling Kate lines up at Warwick Farm today.

Doyle has opted for blinkers back on Vienna Rain ($6), but at the same time doesn’t want rain prior to the Hawkesbury meeting and before the sixth race.

“He has struck heavy tracks at three of his four starts this campaign, and definitely needs dry ground,” Doyle said.

Kerrin McEvoy rode Vienna Rain at the gelding’s latest start at Hawkesbury on September 29 on a “Heavy 9” when sixth of seven and beaten nearly six lengths, and told RacingNSW stewards afterwards he was disappointed with the performance after having a favorable run in transit.

He recommended blinkers go back on the six-year-old.

Early $5 favorite Just Tozza (Willie Pike) will take his place at Hawkesbury, with trainer Jason Coyle pulling the pin on a Warwick Farm start today.

Baranof (Brenton Avdulla) will be a more dominant favorite for the Alpha Chemicals 4YO&Up Maiden Handicap (1300m) as second favorite, English import Wrathful, is making his debut at the Warwick Farm meeting.

. The rail is back in the TRUE position for tomorrow’s meeting, and the track currently is rated a “Good 4”. Only 4mm of irrigation has been put on the track in the past seven days, but none in the last 24 hours.

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