Co-trainer David Hayes has confirmed plans to ride He Or She cold in Saturday’s 2016 Kingston Town Classic as the galloper looks to post his maiden Group 1 win.
The Lindsay Park stable has come close in a number of recent elite level wins this season with six of their horses finishing runner-up.
The latest was in last weekend’s Group 1 Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) in Perth with their mare Sheidel only just going down late to Takedown in the Ascot Racecourse feature.
The weekend before in the same W.A. track they saddled-up Kendel Star six-year-old He Or She in the Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) where the gelding ran ninth to Scales Of Justice.
Formerly prepared in Perth the horse has six previous wins at course and returns there on Saturday as one of 16 runners in the $1 million Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m).
He Or She should appreciate the step-up in distance after his early good form over the spring that included a trio of Group 1 placings.
He finished third in the Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m), second in the Underwood Stakes (1800m) and third to Winx in the Ladbrokes Stakes (2000m).
Hayes, who has prepared three previous Kingston Town Classic winners, is happy to forgive and forget He Or She’s Railway efforts and said the horse would be back off the pace in Saturday’s weight-for-age.
“He’ll go back this time and be ridden cold and he’ll run well,” Hayes told the Herald Sun.
“He’s a good, tough horse.”
Hayes previous victories in the race were with Better Loosen Up (1989) and Niconero (2006 and 2008) who won on non-consecutive years.
In the latest Kingston Town Classic odds at Ladbrokes.com.au He Or She pays $21 to give Hayes his first in partnership with his son Ben and nephew Tom Dabernig.
Favourites and equal favourites have a stellar record in the race over the past decade with the only double-figure winner since 2005 being Playing God (20/1) for his second in 2011.
Playing God also won as the 2/1 favourite in 2010 and this weekend Perfect Reflection is out to be the next back-to-back Kingston Town Classic champion.
She won as a filly 12 months ago and returns as a more mature four-year-old this Perth Summer Racing Carnival.
The Grant & Alana Williams-trained mare currently sits top of the pre-barrier draw Kingston Town Classic betting markets at $4.40 with William Pike continuing associations.
She’s out to turn the tables on the local Lindsey Smith-trained Scales Of Justice and Chris Waller’s Sydney visitor Good Project who beat her home when she crossed third in the Railway Stakes a fortnight back.
He Or She meanwhile has Chris Parnham replacing Craig Williams in the saddle.
To back your favourites in the Kingston Town Classic at the right price make sure you’ve got an account open and ready to go at Ladbrokes.com.au – home of Odds Boost (T&Cs apply).