Rosehill-based horseman Lee Curits is confident the firmer track conditions at Grafton Racecourse this Wednesday will work to the advantage of his Ramornie Handicap 2015 hopeful Turbulent Jet.
A capacity field of sprinters is engaged for this year’s $150,000 Listed Ramornie Handicap (1200m) including Curtis’s in-form Jet Spur five-year-old Turbulent Jet.
Leading the current Ramornie Handicap betting markets at Ladbrokes.com.au, who are offering a Bonus Bet for 2nd or 3rd in the Grafton Cup Carnival feature, at a firming $3.80 is the Peter & Paul Snowden-trained Choisir mare I’ve Got The Looks.
Just outside the single figure hopes in the Ramornie Handicap odds as a nice looking value bet is Turbulent Jet paying $10 to win from barrier nine with Andrew Gibbons booked for the ride.
Gibbons replaces apprentice Winona Costin in the saddle who is engaged to ride rival Timeless Prince, also rated a $10 chance for the win and drawn wide in gate 14, in the Ramornie.
Turbulent Jet is third-up for the season and comes off two second place efforts in BenchMark 85 races over the 1200m at Rosehill.
The latest of those was on May 30 when defeated a mere nose by Aussies Love Sport, an effort Curits is hoping he can improve on this Wednesday on a firmer track.
Heavy rated tracks around Sydney would have ruined the winning chances of Turbulent Jet in any recent Ramornie Handicap lead-ups, and Curtis hopes venturing out to Grafton to find a more suitable track will be the key to Turbulent Jet winning his first race since November of 2013.
“He is just looking for a reasonable track surface and he should get it in Grafton,” Curtis told AAP.
“He has missed the last two Saturdays but he has had some good gallops so that doesn’t worry me.
“I just didn’t want to run him on a shifting track and I’m glad I didn’t.”
Race favourite on Wednesday I’ve Got The Looks has veteran hoop Robert Thompson aboard after Blake Shinn rode her for a disappointing eighth last time out in the Group 3 Glenlogan Park Stakes (1350m) at Doomben on May 23.
Before that the five-year-old won back-to-back Queensland black-types and it is that form she is looking to return to and salute for the punters in the Ramornie.
Hall of Fame hoop Thompson was originally going to ride the defending Ramornie Handicap winner and top weight Big Money in this year’s edition before the horse’s trainer Rodney Northam chose not to accept.
He is more than happy to have picked up the ride on Turbulent Jet however, the Cessnock-based jockey the current co-record holder in the race with CD ‘Skeeter’ Kelly on four previous Ramornie Handicap wins.
His first win in the race inaugurated back in 1910 was in 2007 aboard The Jackal who he also rode to victory in 2008 before Thompson cleaned up again on Youthful Jack (2013) and then Big Money (2014).
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