Woodend trainer Mark Jones doesn’t think his pacing star Saveapatrol will beat three-time New Zealand Cup winner Terror To Love in Saturday’s $40,000 Invercargill Cup.
But he does expect him to pick up the thick end of the minor prize.
“There’s still pay for running in the first four. He’s going to have to step up but you can’t hide them all the time. Its good money and if you run second or third to him (Terror To Love) you’re going to be happy,” said Jones.
“I’d rather race for the good money and I’ve tried to run him in the right races so far,” he explained.
Saveapatrol, who has won nine of his twelve starts, finished fourth two starts ago in the Pelorus Classic at Blenhiem, before easily disposing of his rivals, which included Donegal’s Guest, in the Marlborough Cup on January 12.
“He was probably a run short the first day but you can’t have them right all the time,” admitted Jones.
“Blair (Orange) said he absolutely jogged it in the Marlborough Cup, so we are going into Saturday with a little bit of confidence.”
Saveapatrol has drawn one on the front line for Saturday’s two mile assignment, which gives him a big advantage over Terror To Love and Franco Ledger, who along with Four Starzzz Flash will start from the 30 metre back mark.
“I will leave the driving tactics up to Blair (Orange), but you would think trailing Arden Rooney, who is also off the front, would be a good place to be.”
Jones won the Invercargill Cup with Ohoka Texas in two years ago, so a win with Saveapatrol would give him his second win in the race within three years.
Meanwhile, smart two-year-old Alta Ronaldo, who is a Mach Three half brother to the extremely talented Alta Christiano, will kick off his career in the $10,000 Cruickside Pryde 2YO Mobile Pace.
He is just one of an extremely strong team Purdon and Rasmussen will line up on Saturday. The others include Meticulous, Secret Lotion, Nota Lada, Bio Marinus, Superbowlcheerleader, Arden Rooney, Arsing Easton, and Whisper Jet.
By Mitchell Robertson