Port Macquarie tips: Acoustix to hit high note

Newcastle trainer Nathan Doyle has a habit of getting horses off other trainers and making them win as soon as he races them and Gironde is another one.

The three-year-old is looking to make it three-straight wins for Doyle on Thursday at Port Macquarie in a Benchmark 58 Handicap (1200m). He won first-up at the track two starts ago then was successful at Taree over 1312m last start when winning by half a length but it probably should have been by further.

“I can’t complain. He’s unbeaten since I’ve had him and he’s got a bit left in the tank, too,” Doyle said.

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Jenny Duggan has a great winning chance on Acoustix at Port Macquarie. Picture: AAPSource:AAP

“He floats around when he finds the front and it wasn’t the ideal situation last start when he was trapped out deep and had to push around them and he found the front on straightening.

“It was a long way up the straight and he was fighting the whole way up it and got the job done. He can just wait for them a bit.”

From barrier eight, Doyle wants apprentice Grace Willoughby to get cover on Gironde and produce him later in the race. Willoughby is taking over from the suspended Koby Jennings but did ride him in his trial late last year.

“The horse has come on since that run and hopefully this time we can be fifth or sixth and with something to chase. That’s when you’ll see the best of him,” Doyle said.

“After this run I’ll put the blinkers on and you’ll see more improvement from him. We’ll put them on once we get to the better class of races.



He won two races impressively before a very good run in a Country Championships Qualifier, which is great form to be winning a race like this.


She’s got a good enough gate to get into the right position to win this third-up after a couple of seconds this time in.


She won on debut before a long spell and returned to race well in a fairly strong form race and she can improve greatly off that.



Leg 1: 1, 2, 4, 6

Leg 2: 3, 4, 6, 8

Leg 3: 2, 4, 5

Leg 4: 1, 3, 5, 11


KRIS LEES can train at least a double with Captain Solo looking very hard to beat in the third race, while Tigeen and Spiritual Power are also big hopes.


DARRYL MCLELLAN has a few good chances in Exotic Pearl and Just Cosmos.


Kris Lees has a powerful team heading to Port Macquarie. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images


“He’s not a flash worker but come race day he really switches on. He always showed me he had something. He moved well and wasn’t having much of a blow. He looks after himself.”

Izzat also runs for Doyle in a Maiden Plate (1500m) and he’s fit enough to be running a strong trip. He flopped last start at the provincials but did run second a run earlier at Port Macquarie.

“He was disappointing the other day after a good run before it,” Doyle said. “He seems to be one of those horses where the worse you ride him the better he goes.”

Doyle will run the highly promising Pride Of Adelaide at Hawkesbury on Saturday and another big win could set him on a path to a big race over the Sydney autumn carnival.

He comes off a seven-length win on the Beaumont track at Newcastle last start and despite having just three starts to date he could find himself in a couple of Group 1 races.

The Adelaide three-year-old has been nominated for the Group 1 Rosehill Guineas and Group 1 ATC Derby. They are ambitious goals but Doyle won’t be afraid to have a throw at the stumps if his horse keeps winning in dominant fashion.

“We’ll get through Saturday first,” he said. “I don’t want him to be a flash in the pan which is why we’ve gone to a Class 1. If he can do the same sort of job on Saturday then those better races are options. I’m training the horse not the program.”

Meantime, Greg Howells knows his two horses racing at Port Macquarie — Teo Torriate and Real Gent — probably need some rain to hit the track if they are to keep winning. Both come off last-start wins on heavy tracks and as long as they can get their toe into the track on Thursday they will race well.

Sky Racing news update 4.3.2020

Sky Racing news update 4.3.2020.

Real Gent kicks off the charge in the sixth race and he’s looking for three-straight wins but does have to carry 4kg more in weight after he won last start at Ballina.

“He probably needs the inside gate now that he goes up in weight,” Howells said.

“You’d like to think he’d nearly lead from the barrier. He’s a pretty strong-going bugger and if you tuck him in behind you’ll have a wrestling match and I know who would win.

“He’s very suited at the mile and he does well and he’s nice and tightened up.”

It doesn’t have to be an absolute bog track, though. “He ran fifth three starts back at Ballina but it was a good form race and he did it on an improving Soft 6,” Howells said.

The stable’s other runner, Teo Torriate, has drawn wide in the eighth race and must be given a dig out of the gates to get the job done.

“It depends on what mood she’s in on the day,” Howells said.

“You’ve got to be positive on her because if you jump out and drop your hands she thinks she’s just there to have a jog around. She’s been honest and puts in 100 per cent when she wants to and on other occasions she doesn’t but she’s paid her way.”

Howells will hope she can cross them, lead and hold on.

“She didn’t draw the best (12) but with the claim she gets into this pretty well and there’s some form to come out of the Ballina race,” he said.

“She beat Foxy Walk then it came out and won well at its next start so that was good. She won’t be too close to the fence from the draw though.”

Darryl McLellan has a few good chances at Port Macquarie, including Exotic Pearl in race four. Picture: Richard GoslingSource:News Corp Australia


RACE 1 (12.40pm)

Sparkling Rose is set to start favourite despite being a 10-start maiden with just two placings. She’s first-up without a public trial and the last time she was seen was in September, when running a close fifth at Tuncurry. Trematon is a 14-start maiden with two placings. He has had two trials and the last one looked pretty good. Qukes might improve back on top of the ground.


RACE 2 (1.15pm)

Serbelloni ended his last preparation with a win which is always a good sign and he’s had a nice tune-up trial for this prep where he will be out to improve his winning strike rate. Peachies Dream has just one win from 23 starts but will have support because she’s placed on 14 occasions and her only win was last start. But it was on a heavy track over 1250m and she drops back to 1000m, which is a query. Supreme Diva ran well in a good form race last start.

BET: Quinella 4, 8.

RACE 3 (1.50pm)

Captain Solo will be very well supported after two seconds in stronger races this time in and he’s been sent here for a confidence-boosting win. On form, it’s hard to see anything beating him as long as he handles a possible wet track, which he hasn’t encountered on race day. Stonecold Flex finally gets a good draw which can help him finish in a higher spot than in the past.


RACE 4 (2.25pm)

Exotic Pearl should be able to race one-off the fence and just off the speed which gives him every chance to improve on two second placings this preparation. Les Amoureux finds her easiest career race after running in town and at the provincials under a previous trainer. Balboa has drawn well and comes off a career-best run when third and the highly promising Pride Of Adelaide ran second that day before going on to win its next start by seven lengths, so it’s a good form reference.

BET: Exacta 12, 1.

RACE 5 (3.05pm)

Just Cosmos has a racing pattern that takes bad luck out of the equation and will be in this for a long way and should go close to holding on and winning. Za Za Zena also likes to race positively and will need to get away quick to cross them from a wide gate. She may be vulnerable late if she has to work too hard early on. Sytus is back in grade and will enjoy this trip first-up and is bred to handle the wet.


RACE 6 (3.40pm)

Tigeen took the whole straight to run the leader down first-up over 1350m and the 1500m will suit. She can win again as long as that fresh run doesn’t leave her flat second-up. Real Gent comes off two straight wins but both were on heavy tracks, so he wants the rain to arrive. Acoustix tries 1500m for the first time but it looks like he will run it out and he won two races before a close sixth in a Country Championships Qualifier last start, so he’s got the form to win again.


RACE 7 (4.15pm)

Barrier one probably isn’t ideal for Senatorial, who likes to get back and run on. As long as he gets clear running when it counts, he can surge past his rivals. He’s in fantastic form but his racing pattern comes with risks. Up the Stairs would have won a Highway race last start had he drawn better. Again he will need luck from the gate but he’s going well enough to be right in the finish. Into The Oblivion has drawn well and gets in with a good weight after a big last-start win.


RACE 8 (4.50pm)

Nashian has won fresh and at the track and no doubt has the talent to be winning this race first-up despite drawing wide. Gypsy Queen gets back to a track where she’s performed well of late without winning while Darmasun resumes for a new trainer after showing glimpses of good form in Victoria. Di’s Diamond had a wide gate but likes to get back anyway so look for her late. Teo Torriate has won at the track and likes it wet.

BET: NASHIAN to win.

RACE 9 (5.30pm)

Gironde goes for three straight wins and this race isn’t any harder than the one he took out last start. He just needs to hit the lead later in the race this time so he doesn’t wander about. Spiritual Power is his main challenger and will sit off the speed and get the right run to finish it off. Hubble and Manno are also some of the main challengers in an open enough race.

BET: GIRONDE to win.

Originally published asPort Macquarie tips: Acoustix to hit high note

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