Scone-based trainer Rodney Northam is banking on the good form of Big Money to continue in the WJ Healy Stakes this weekend before the galloper has a crack at Grafton’s 2014 Ramornie Handicap.
Northam has had the $150,000 Listed Ramornie Handicap (1200m), running on July 9, on the agenda for Choisir four-year-old Big Money for some time now and is eager to see how they go there.
First however they’ll shoot for some black type during the final Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival meeting on Tattersall’s Tiara Day this Saturday.
There at Eagle Farm they will run in the $175,000 Group 3 W.J. Healy Stakes (1200m), the handicap clash attracting 16 nominations today.
One of those is Big Money who has run top two in their past seven straight races since a win at Newcastle in early November last year.
Going on to win three more times since then, including the Autumn Sprint at Muswellbrook in May and a Benchmark 75 over 1100m at Scone a fortnight after that, they were last seen stepping up to stakes company at Eagle Farm.
On June 7 they ran in the Listed Lightning Handicap (1000m) and ran a close second when beaten just a long neck by Cape Kidnappers in the feature.
They get a chance then on Saturday to turn the tables on their Kelly Schweida-trained Lightning Handicap winner with Cape Kidnappers also set to back up in the W.J. Healy Stakes.
Northam though has warned Big Money could bypass Saturday’s showdown if there’s rain around, the galloper doing their best running on Good (4-2-2-0) and Dead (3-2-1-0) tracks.
“I’ll see what the weather is like next week,” Northam told The Sydney Morning Herald last week.
“If it’s good, Big Money will tackle the Healy, but if it’s too wet I’ll probably trial him and go straight into the Ramornie.
“That’s the race we’ve been after.”
A host of other WJ Healy hopes also come via the Lighting Stakes including third placed Rocky King for Sunshine Coast horseman Tom Bourke, and sixth place Howmuchdoyouloveme.
Con Karakatsanis’ Written Tycoon five-year-old Howmuchdoyouloveme was forced to carry a back-breaking 61kg in the Lightning Handicap and could only manage to finish three and a half lengths away seventh.
Karakatsanis has bluntly described how disappointed he would be if the horse were to receive the same weight for the WJ Healy, a race the horse won last year with 60kg on their back and Nash Rawiller riding.
Along with Big Money in the Healy, Northam will also be represented in Saturday’s major race with Myamira running in the $500,000 Group 1 Tattersall’s Tiara (1400m).
A total of 25 fillies and mares make up the Tattersall’s Tiara nominations this year including Beautiful Crown mare Myamira, the five-year-old coming via a sixth in the Group 2 Dane Ripper Stakes (1400m).
The Dane Ripper has produced three of the past 10 Tattersall’s Tiara winners with Russeting (2009), Yosei (2011) and the Chris Waller-trained Red Tracer who completed the double last year.
Red Tracer is in the mix again this year along with stable mates Catkins and She’s Clean.
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