Preview: Dunn’s big triple play

Thursday, 24 August 2017, 01:36:41 PM. LIFESAVER is being reserved for Rosehill Gardens but trainer Matthew Dunn still has the opportunity to lead in a hometown stable hat-trick culminating with Red Bowers’s title defence in the $28,000 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) at Murwillumbah on Friday.



Dunn confirmed Lifesaver will be withdrawn from the Class 3 Handicap (1200m) and kept for the TAB Highway (1100m) at Rosehill on Saturday but the trainer still has three good winning chances at Murwillumbah — Red Bowers, Call The Coppers and Martial Art.

Red Bowers is chasing a second successive Murwillumbah Newmarket win, although Dunn conceded the firm track (good 3) is a concern.

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Lightly raced six-year-old who has made an excellent start to his career, winning two of his first three starts. He resumed with a good win at Ipswich, scoring by a half length and recording a very fast final 600m sectional of 32.64s. Drawn nicely in barrier five, he should settle on speed and prove too slick for his rivals.


Improved by two runs from a spell, Martial Art indicated he was close to winning form with a very good third, beaten less than a half length, in a class 3 at Ipswich. He comes back slightly in grade here, has the home track advantage, and is in a very winnable race.


Street Comic broke his maiden in emphatic style at the Sunshine Coast when he forged clear of his rivals over 2200m last start. He is taking on some tough, seasoned stayers here but the gelding should gain confidence from his breakthrough and has more upside than his rivals.

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Trainer Chris Munce hopes to snare the Murwillumbah Cup with former Sydneysider Cauthen’s Power. Picture: Grant Peters, Trackside PhotographySource:News Corp Australia


Race 5: 1, 6. Race 6: 1, 4, 6. Race 7: 3, 6, 8, 11. Race 8: 4, 6, 8.


CHRIS MUNCE has two runners at the meeting including former Sydneysider Cauthen’s Power in the feature, the $38,000 Murwillumbah Cup. Cauthen’s Power has been improved by two runs from a spell and looks over the odds. Munce also saddles up Believe It Or Not in the 1010m maiden.


RON STEWART has six competitive rides including Sorority Sister (Newmarket Handicap), Cauthen’s Power (Murwillumbah Cup) and Street Comic (Tygalgah Cup).



“He won the Newmarket last year and he is going well enough to run a competitive race again,’’ Dunn said. “But we would be more confident if the track has some give in it. I’d like to see some rain (overnight).’’

Red Bowers has won his only two starts over the Murwillumbah 1200m course, including an open sprint there three starts back. He then struggled in Calanda’s Ramornie Handicap before running sixth behind Lucky Meteor and Heroic Action in the Ballina Sprint.

Heroic Action, the winner of 16 races, is the No. 1 saddlecloth bearer and looms as the hardest to beat in Murwillumbah Newmarket. TAB Fixed Odds price assessors rate Heroic Action early favourite at $3.20 ahead of Sorority Sister at $4.20, Red Bowers is next at $6.50.

Dunn is confident Call The Coppers will shed his “professional placegetter” tag in the Murwillumbah Cup Day opener, a 1010m maiden.

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Trainer Matt Dunn will be a dominant force at his hometown meeting on Friday. Picture: Scott FletcherSource:News Corp Australia

Call The Coppers has had five starts for four seconds and a third. He hasn’t raced since being edged out by Best Of Us over Friday’s course and distance in February but Dunn revealed the sprinter subsequently underwent airway surgery.

“Call The Coppers was a grade five roarer when we stopped him so the surgery should help him,’’ Dunn said of Call The Coppers. “He had a nice, soft trial on the Gold Coast and is coming up well. He has good speed, should get across from the outside barrier and he gets in well at the weights after the claim. I’d be disappointed if he didn’t beat those horses at home.’’

Bookies agree as Call The Coppers dominates betting at $1.45 in early markets.

Martial Art comes off a close third in an Ipswich class 3 and drops back in grade for the 1530m race today where he is the favourite at $2.15. “This does look the right race for Martial Art, particularly with the home track advantage,’’ Dunn said. “The track is going to be quite firm and you will need to be on speed but this looks a race he can win.’’


Brad Davidson

BRUCE Hill has labelled Liberty Island the pick of his Murwillumbah Cup runners but he also predicted Winning Accord to improve sharply as well.

The Gold Coast trainer will be represented by up to five runners in the $38,000 Murwillumbah Cup (1530m) with Liberty Island rated the $3.40 favourite with TAB.

“He is going pretty good and he probably (is the pick of my Cup runners) when you sit down and look at it,” Hill said. “He is racing good and races on the pace, when you have to there (at Murwillumbah). He has a good alley and he has a few things in his favour.”

Winning Accord has been well beaten at his past two starts but Hill said he has turned a corner in recent days. “Winning Accord is a nice horse and he has a very good record at Murwillumbah and he doesn’t mind it a bit damp either,” he said.

“He is going very good actually and he won first-up, and we had him (ready) for that. Then he put in a couple of ordinary ones but I think it was mainly because he had a hard (run) first-up. He looks a lot happier in the last week and he looks really good the horse.”

Hill said first emergency Montrer Dame will run well if the rain arrives, while he is unlikely to start second emergency Toronto Flyer even if it gains a run. Bodega Negra will carry the Cup top weight of 63kg.

“He has a lot of weight but with him it’s just about trying to find a race for him because there hasn’t been much for him in (Brisbane),” he said. “It’s a lot of weight (63kg) but I don’t think he will have any dramas with it. I thought about putting a kid on but he is not really a kid’s horse.”

Hill will also have Media Maid and Redsson in the Murwillumbah Newmarket (1200m) today.

“It’s a tricky race but Media Maid has drawn a good alley and she always gives 100 per cent,” he said. “Redsson is going good but he is a bit hit and miss.”

INSIDE MAIL with Brad Davidson

R1 (12.25pm): CG & E MAIDEN HCP (1010m)

Hard to go past 1. Call The Coppers despite the wide draw. He has the best figures for this and should be hard to beat. He is odds-on though. 5. Conspicuous won a recent trial at Doomben and he comes from a very astute yard. Barry Lockwood is a very underrated trainer. 3. Nobby’s Gift ran second at the Sunshine Coast two back and a repeat of that effort will see him run well, while 10. Torre Saracino flashed home first-up and has drawn a touch better here.

BETTING STRATEGY: Happy to watch these at the current odds.

R2 (1.05pm): F7M MAIDEN HCP (1010m)

9. Squall trialled OK recently and you must respect a first starter from the David Vandyke yard. 7. Tay Swift put in some solid runs last preparation and she just needs a bit of luck from the wide draw. 2. Grazie Mille Bella was only beaten four lengths on debut at the Sunshine Coast back in April and she has drawn ideally in barrier three.

BETTING STRATEGY: Follow any betting move for SQUALL.

R3 (1.40pm): CLASS 2 HCP (1530m)

1. Martial Art was beaten narrowly in a three-way go last start at Ipswich. He is trained by Matt Dunn and will be ridden by Matt McGuren — that’s a good combination. 7. Mizaru ran on well late first-up and can continue to improve, while 2. Wainui Gold ran second at Toowoomba last start and he should get all the favours from gate one. 3. Ramatuelle ran on well at Ipswich last start and will be attacking line.

BETTING STRATEGY: MIZARU the value at $15.

R4 (2.20pm): CLASS 3 HCP (1200m)

4. Je Suis Prest was a solid last-start winner at Ballina and she was runner-up at the Gold Coast the start prior to that. 3. Mishani Phoenix beat all bar Jetintoit first-up at Ipswich and he was around the mark in Class 3 and Class 4 company last preparation. 2. Tyrannize was disappointing last start but the two runs at Grafton prior were full of merit.


R5 (2.55pm): BENCHMARK 55 HCP (1010m)

1. Silent Statue came out and won well first-up in a Class 1 and there’s no reason he can’t make it three wins from four starts here. He has to lump a bit of weight but gets a claim. 7. Loch Maree put two together on the trot at the Gold Coast last preparation and she is resuming here. 6. Mishani Shiraz doesn’t have a jockey engaged as I type but if she runs she has to be considered despite the wide gate. Her trainer, Ben Currie, is a promising trainer on the rise. 5. Skanda can improve after enduring a wide run fresh.


R6 (3.35pm): NEWMARKET HCP (1200m)

Hard to go past 1. Heroic Action. He has finished in the top three at his past five starts. He beat all bar Lucky Meteor first-up and he will put himself close to the speed. 4. Red Bowers has won two from two at this track and he just has to lump the 60kg. 6. Annandale Lass has been runner-up her past two starts but she has drawn awkwardly. 8. She Tells Lies has been running on well at her past couple of starts and expect her to do the same here.


R7 (4.10pm): MURWILLUMBAH CUP (1530m)

5. Cashing Up has been racing in stronger company and he was only beaten 4½ lengths in a stakes race three starts back. 3. Liberty Island ticks a lot of boxes and he should get a lovely run just behind the speed from barrier two. He gets in with just 54.5kg on his back and he handles all going. Bruce Hill said 9. Winning Accord has really turned a corner in the past week and don’t be surprised if he runs a cheeky race. 1. Bodega Negra went better than it looks on paper first-up and just needs to lump the 63kg.


R8 (4.50pm): TYGALGAH CUP (2020m)

6. Outstrip is always running on strongly and he just doesn’t win out of turn. This looks a nice enough race for him and he should go close. 10. Legal Stature has opted for this race over an earlier assignment and he will put himself on speed and prove hard to run down. 4. Godwood is no star but he is honest and I would be surprised if he didn’t finish in the first four or five at least. 8. Street Comic won his maiden in good fashion at the Sunshine Coast last start and also has claims.

BETTING STRATEGY: OUTSTRIP to win. Quinella 6,10.

Originally published as Preview: Dunn’s big triple play

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