This Saturday in Perth veteran local horseman Neville Parnham will saddle-up two livewire chances in the 2014 Kingston Town Classic with Bass Strait and Rommel representing the stable.
Parnahm’s sons Chris and Steven take the rides on Bass Strait and Rommel respectively in this year’s $500,000 Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) that brings an end to Group 1 racing for 2014.
Winner of the Group 3 RJ Peters Stakes (1500m) at the track two back, Holy Roman Emperor five-year-old Bass Strait has had apprentice Chris Parnham aboard for his three runs this time in.
The latest of those was in the traditional Kingston Town Classic lead-up when the gelding finished a credible sixth beaten home two and a quarter lengths by the Grant Williams-trained mare Elite Belle in the $1 million Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m).
Formerly prepared in Victoria by David Hayes before moving to Perth with Parnham earlier this spring, Bass Strait came through the Railway in good form according to his new trainer.
“I’m very happy with him, and he has come on nicely since the run the other day,” Parnham told Perth Racing.
“He should go quite well.”
Bass Strait is the longer priced of the two stable mates in Kingston Town Classic betting at Ladbrokes.com.au however with Commands colt Rommel better fancied to win based on his lead-up form.
The youngster was runner-up to fellow Kingston Town hope Disposition two back when second in the Listed Fairetha Stakes (1400m) before turning the tables to win the Group 2 WA Guineas (1600m) on November 22.
The WA Guineas has been one of the best recent guides for the weight-for-age Group 1 over 1800m including last year when the Fred Kersley-trained Ihtsahymn (2013), back again to defend his title in 2014, completed the double.
Other three-year-old Kingston Town Classic winners include Old Comrade (2000), Megatic (2007) and Playing God (2010) who also won for Parnham in 2011 as a four-year-old.
Now Parnham is confident Rommel can be the next and go back-to-back for the youngsters on Saturday.
“I’ve got no doubt Rommel is up to the class,” Parnham said.
“He delivered the goods in the Guineas, and the others behind him didn’t have many excuses, including Disposition.”
The 52kg weight advantage for the three-year-olds is a big one and Parnham knows that will work in both his horse’s and Williams’s Reset gelding Disposition’s favour.
Parnham also isn’t righting off the top three in the Kingston Town Classic odds with Elite Belle, Balmont Girl and the Chris Waller-trained favourite for this weekend Moriarty coming off the winning Railway Stakes trifecta.
“Elite Belle is obviously the classiest horse in the race, and Moriarty was probably the run of the race in the Railway but he’s been up quite a while,” he said.
Get behind your favourites in the Kingston Town Classic 2014 online at Ladbrokes.com.au this weekend and take advantage of their $500 bonus bet offer now in its final days!