Gary Harley – Herald – 19.06.23

Lightly raced mare Golden Gate will appreciate a drop in class when she contests The Prince Of Merewether Benchmark 66 Handicap (1350m) at the WCRC meeting to be run on the Beaumont track on Monday. Trained by Gerald Ryan and Sterling Alexiou, the mare has won two of six starts – and she finished a close up at Wyong last start on June 1. She was a clear last during the run and when she got to the outside she made up many lengths. On April 21 on Tamworth Cup Day Golden Gate finished strongly to win the $50,000 Jardel Cup. The mare has drawn well and will carry blinkers for the first time.

Scone trained filly Yirrkala can overcome a wide barrier in the Brave Smash @ Yarraman Park Country Boosted Class 1 Handicap (1300m). She has only had five starts, and she kicked off her career with an easy Scone win in November. The filly has been placed twice at Scone and Muswellbrook, and last on June 9 Yirrkala was only beaten two lengths by the boom country sprinter Remember Jack. Brett Cavanough trains and Grant Buckley will ride.

Annabel Neasham will send Great British import Kingdom Of Logres to Newcastle and stable apprentice Jett Stanley will ride the Camelot colt in the Horsepower Feeds & Supplements Benchmark 58 Handicap (2100m). He has won two from four at Orange and Bathurst, and last start the colt came from a long way back when beaten 1 ¼ lengths at Nowra.

Local three-year-old Sir Tom has his chance to break through in the New Era Technology CG&E Maiden Handicap (1150m). He has had thirteen starts for eight placings and he has placed in his last three starts at Tamworth, Kembla and Quirindi. The gelding was placed at Hawkesbury in March, and he finished a respectable fourth in his only start on this track. Paul Perry trains Sir Tom and “Digger” McLellan has the mount.

Nephradiva from the Steve O’Halloran stable has the recent form to win the Sage Painting F&M Benchmark 58 Handicap (1150m). The Winning Rupert mare was a close fourth at Gosford last start and she was runner up at Goulburn two starts back. Louise Day has been booked to ride Nephradiva from barrier two.

Kris Lees and his stable apprentice Dylan Gibbons combine with two-year-old filly Kind Words in the Australian Bloodstock F&M Maiden Handicap (1150m). Raced by Kiwi Lib Petagna, the filly was narrowly beaten in a recent Beaumont trial. A Written Tycoon filly, Kind Words will be hard to beat.

North Cost filly Revealer came from last in a big field to just miss at Port Macquarie last start and she is the one to beat in the opening event, the Kloster Motor Group Country Boosted Maiden Plate (1350m).