Gold Coast horseman Bruce Hill is confident his galloper Teronado is ready to go the staying distance of Thursday’s Grafton Cup 2016 taking on an open field in the black-type clash.
Due to run as Race 7 at 4:05pm (AEST) on Day 2 of the Grafton Cup Carnival, the $160,000 Listed Grafton Cup (2350m) field features 15 hopefuls.
Five of those are under $10 for the win in the Grafton Cup odds at Ladbrokes.com.au that are narrowly led by the John O’Shea-trained Tattersall’s Cup third placegetter Malice ($4.60).
Hill’s hopeful Teronado meanwhile pays $15 in a tight Grafton Cup betting market, the Testa Rossa five-year-old jumping from barrier nine with Robert Thompson replacing suspended apprentice James Orman in the saddle.
Orman was aboard the gelding last start at Eagle Farm on June 25 in the Listed Tattersall’s Open Handicap (1830m) where Teronado crossed second to Fletre.
That was his first top three run of the year, the horse having only returned to racing in May after a summer – autumn spell.
Teronado carried 54.5kg to his stakes’ placing late last month and gets in on Thursday’s 54kg minimum as he prepares for just his second start over the distance.
As a three-year-old Teronado showed staying potential running third to Criterion in the 2014 Group 1 Rosehill Guineas (2000m).
He suffered a nasty injury later that year in the Group 1 George Main Stakes (1600m) that threatened to end his career.
Hill’s patience and care for the horse paid off however, Teronado returning to the track and catching the eye last spring when sixth, beaten only 3.6 lengths by Chris Waller’s subsequent Cox Plate winning mare Winx in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap (1600m) in Sydney.
Teronado has some good form around some very nice types then, class Hill is hoping can shine through on the weekend with the horse to be tested over these kind of metres for the first time since his ATC Derby failure in the mud when 14th to Criterion one run after the Rosehill Guineas third in 2014.
“We can finally get him out to a staying race distance in the Grafton Cup,” Hill told AAP.
“He has done well and the race should suit him.”
The other headline Grafton Cup hopefuls this winter include Chris Waller’s recent Group 2 Tattersall’s Cup (2200m) winner in Brisbane Index Linked ($5.50), the Tony Gollan-trained Caloundra Cup winner over the mile and a half on July 2 Amexed ($5.50) and Jumbo Prince ($5.50).
Jumbo Prince hails from the Toowoomba stables of Michael Nolan and has Jim Byrne retaining the ride from barrier six on Thursday on the back of seconds in the Ipswich Cup and Caloundra Cup at his two latest runs.
The four-year-old Outback Prince stallion only stepped up to the mile and a half for the first time in the Caloundra Cup, doing a good job to finish runner-up behind fellow Grafton Cup rival Amexed.
Nolan is hoping his horse can go one better in the rematch this week, Jumbo Prince staying on the same 55.5kg weight.
“He is fit and well so why not give him a chance at winning another stakes race. Jim Byrne will ride him and I am looking forward to the challenge,” Nolan said of the horse snapped up for a steal as a yearling in 2013.
“He cost only $8000 and has won $645,000. No wonder he is one of our favourites.
“He has been Group 1-placed in the Queensland Derby at 2200 metres.”
To check out the full Grafton Cup 2016 odds and back your favourites in the winter feature at the right price, visit Ladbrokes.com.au today!