Horoscopes scratches from Rousillon in favour of Lismore Cup
A FAVOURABLE barrier draw has convinced Ballina trainer Danny Bowen to bypass the Lismore Workers Club Rousillon Hcp and start the consistent Horoscopes in tomorrow's $45,000 XXXX Gold Lismore Cup (2100m).
Horoscopes, a dual acceptor, has top weight of 59kgs in the Rousillon while he drops to 54kgs from barrier nine in the cup.
A field of 14 has accepted for the race, led by Ballina Cup winner and top weight Playitstraight.
The former Melbourne-trained Sea Skye, twice placed at Flemington and once at Sandown at three of his last four starts, will also go.
A disappointing field of only eight accepted for the Rousillon, tomorrow's co-feature race, and the scratching of Horoscopes will reduce it to seven.
Lismore Turf Club has agonised over the Rousillon in recent years but appeared to have found the right mix in 2011 when it made the race a Benchmark 70 over 1400 metres. It had 14 runners that year while last year under the same conditions and over the same distance had nine runners.
The move this year to extend it to 1516 metres as a Benchmark 67 may have spoiled the recipe.
Bowen said Horoscopes, to be ridden for only the second time by Terry Treichel, had done well since his fast finishing third over 1400 metres at the Gold Coast last Saturday.
"That was good cup trial," Bowen said.
"If he had not run in the first four then we might have had to rethink our plans but it was a good effort and he has done well since.
"The horse is super fit and will not have any trouble running out the cup distance. He has been up for a long time and the trick has been to keep him ticking over and keep him happy."
While Horoscopes has not won beyond 1900 metres, he did run a good fourth over 2100 metres at Grafton in July with top weight of 57.5kgs.
Horoscopes drops from the 58.5kgs he carried last Saturday to 54kgs tomorrow.
In his last six starts he has been placed three times at the Gold Coast, once at Lismore and ran a great fourth in the Ballina Cup, coming from 10th on the turn after missing the start.
Bowen thinks barrier nine is ideal. "Terry rode him for the first time last Saturday," he said. "He got on well with the horse and did a great job so there is no reason to replace him. He should be able to get the horse across from that barrier and be sitting one out in about fifth or sixth spot which is where Terry had him last Saturday.
"That would be perfect."
LISMORE XXXX GOLD CUP MEETING
Gates open: 11am
Entry: $20 per adult (non-member)
First race: 1pm
Eight races on the card with the XXXX Gold Lismore Cup at 5.15pm.
Horoscopes (Gate Six): Solid recent form and should be in prime condition.