Rosehill’s Hawkes stable will send it’s classy three-year-old filly Dashing Legend to Newcastle to kick off her Spring campaign on Saturday. The daughter of Snitzel resumes in the Slattery Auctions & Valuations Maiden Plate (900m). She has a soft draw, and with more than $71,000 in the bank the filly is very well weighted under the set weight conditions.
Dashing Legend’s only three starts were in the Autumn where she was placed twice. On debut she was beaten less than a length from the winner in a 2yo Kensington Maiden on February 16. Second up the Hong Kong owned filly was runner up in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes at Rosehill, 1.82 lengths from the winner. She then finished midfield in the Group 2 Percy Sykes before a spell. Dashing Legend was impressive in winning a recent Rosehill trial with William Pike aboard.
Dashing Legend’s stablemate Grand Crusader can make it a double for the Hawkes team when he contests the Drayton Group Maiden Handicap (1250m). The four-year-old is on debut after two nice metropolitan trials. On August 12 she was bloused late by Dashing Legend in a 900m trial. Mitchell Bell has the mount on the stablemates.
Australia’s champion trainer Chris Waller has accepted with eight of his team for the Newcastle meeting. The Kiwi has at least three genuine chances – Galifianakis, London and Endorsement.
The former is an Irish import placed in all four Australian starts, all at Newcastle. He is well placed in the opening event, the Neuro Alliance Maiden Plate (1860m). The gelding ran on well over 1400m first up here on August 6 and he will appreciate the longer trip. London is a Capitalist colt who resumes in the Drayton Group Maiden Handicap (1250m). His recent trials suggest he will run well. Endorsement, another with good Newcastle form will be hard to beat in the final event, the Tipp-Exc Civil CG&E Benchmark 64 Handicap (1400m). The four-year-old has had three starts, all at Newcastle for a win and a second.
The Rosehill trained Ang Pow is an interesting runner in the Eight Recruitment Conditional Benchmark 68 Handicap (1250m). Prepared by the father and son partnership of Richard and Will Freedman, Ang Pow has had four country starts for two wins and two placings. He hasn’t started since February but has won two recent Rosehill trials.
This is a high-quality provincial meeting. The Newcastle track continues to dry out after 13mm of rain in the past seven days. As of Thursday night, the track was rated a Soft 6 with no further rain expected.