Day At The Track

Watson hoping for continued improvement

08:33 AM 19 Oct 2018 NZDT
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There will be a few trainers and owners looking to improve their horse’s ID18 rankings at Trots HQ on Saturday night, among that number is Kyabram horseman Mark Watson, who's hoping for continued improvement from two runners at different stages of their careers.

Watson will gear up former star juvenile Brallos Pass in the Welcome Pridmore Electrics! Pace over 2240m and promising three-year-old Prosecco Boy in the 1720m Prydes EasiFeed 3YO Pace Final.

He said Brallos Pass, who won the 2016 SA Derby and got within 2.3m of champion Lazarus in 1:52.9 the next year, was almost ready to fire after two runs back from a spell.

“He hasn’t had great form (these) two runs in but hadn’t raced for a fair while and there weren’t that many suitable trials around so we went to the races,” Watson said.

“When you get to his class you can’t (expect to win) when you’re only 80 per cent fit but I have been happy enough with both his runs.

“The trouble he has been having at the moment is he has drawn poor. And he has drawn poor again on Saturday night so I will leave that up to (driver) Ellen (Tormey). He may take one more run but he’s not far off.”

The likes of Audi Hare (25th in ID18 rankings) , Love Ina Chevy (40th), Burnaholeinmypocket (45th) and Hickstead (91st) will join Watson’s six-year-old in trying to improve their TAB Inter Dominion rankings on Saturday night, as will a great chunk of the field in the Aldebaran Park Trot.

ID18’s second round of rankings, released this week, have Brallos Pass at 33 in the pacing pecking order, which has him starting if the series was run tomorrow.

“That’s the pipedream isn’t it,” Watson told “You look at last Saturday night, the Victoria Cup, gee there were some nice horses in that. I feel he may be in that lower, next category, (but) he never disgraces himself.

 “But for us it is a dream to participate in a series like that. Hopefully he can keep on improving and he can go through the series. We’ll have no expectations and enjoy the ride.”

The latter statement also rings true for Prosecco Boy, who set tongues wagging after his first start third to Emma Stewart’s highly rated youngster Demon Delight at Shepparton earlier this month.

“He drew bad, would have run a really quick quarter down the back and just wobbled a bit on the corner and lost his momentum a little bit, but he was good,” Watson said.

“He has definitely got some speed, there’s no doubting that, but I don’t think the boom and the horse deserve each other just yet."

He said Prosecco Boy, who on Saturday night faces Demon Delight again from very similar draws to Shepparton, was a late starter who had “come a long way in a short time”.

“We didn’t break this fella in until really late, he was nearly a two-year-old, as he kept on getting bad infections and colds as a young one,” he said.

“He is still very babyish in the mind; he is a little bit of a spooky little fella and it took him a little bit of time to get his confidence.”

Watson said Prosecco Boy’s rapid improvement meant it was hard to gauge where he might end up.

“If you had have asked me (what he was like) about six weeks ago I would have said ‘nah, I don’t like this one’,” he said.

“(But) you notice a weekly improvement in him, in his mannerisms and his affection towards yourself and the other horses; he is a much friendlier horse now.

“He’s not in the same league (as Brallos Pass at the same age). I have never, ever put him in the same street. He has a fair way to go to live up to (the hype)."

Shaun Campbell

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