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In-form Goluburn galloper How Much My Love is set for their first stakes assignment of the season, the six-year-old ready to tackle a quality field of rivals in the Ascot Handicap 2012 at Eagle Farm in Brisbane on Saturday.
The Danny Williams-trained Spartacus gelding has won seven of their 27 career starts so far but is yet to break their black type maiden.
Williams hopes that can change this weekend when they line-up as one of 11 chances in the $80,000 Listed PMP Ascot Handicap (1200m).
How Much My Love has raced against stakes company on just three occasions, their best result being a sixth behind Woorim in the 2010 Glasshouse Handicap on the Sunshine Coast.
It has been a while between drinks for them as well with their last victory being a narrow photo finish win over Kenny’s World in the Wagga Town Plate back in May last year.
This year they have had five runs, their two most recent at Rockhampton being their best.
After a close fourth when beaten less than a length by Kilwinning Option in the Tattersall’s Handicap over 1200m on June 7 they backed up with another eye catching fourth, this time behind Emmertt in the Rockhampton Newmarket Handicap (1300m) on June 21.
“The prizemoney was what attracted us there,” Williams said of the trip all the way up to Rockhampton.
“His runs were very sound.
“His first run he was a bit fresh and underdone and next start he got back from a wide gate then had to do a bit of work to get there and he just died on his run.”
Williams is confident they can pull out a good run on Saturday against the likes of the Gerald Ryan-trained Adnocon coming off a third in the Eye Liner Stakes at Ipswich, and Rob Heathcote’s recent Lightning Handicap winner Griffon despite the 1200-metres being a little short of their preferred.
“It’s a bit shorter than I would have preferred,” Williams admitted.
“He is really looking for 1400 (metres) but I thought the bigger track at Eagle Farm might help.
“He’s an older horse now and I’ve had to place him right.”
While How Much My Love has a wide barrier 10 draw to overcome, helping them do that will be flying hoop Chris Munce fresh off his century of metro winners for the season.
“Chris is riding particularly well and he’s on a bit of a high so let’s hope he can continue that on Saturday,” Williams said.
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