Day At The Track

Wide open Echuca Pacing Cup

06:50 PM 31 Mar 2016 NZDT
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Brian Gath
Brian Gath could well be holding another trophy aloft when he takes the reins for Im Alex.

The harness racing Country Cups Championships heads to Frank Ryan Raceway this Saturday night for the running of the Moama Bowling Club Echuca Pacing Cup.

The $30,450 Group 3 race shapes as an even affair, in which Im Alex will be looking to take advantage of his plum draw.

VIDEO: KEEP YOUR QUADDIE WIDE AT ECHUCA, JASON BONNINGTON TELLS PUNTERS

The seven-year-old gelding has been racing consistently well of recent times without winning and trainer Isabel Walsh is hopeful that will change this week.

“He is a nice horse and hopefully from the good draw he can have some luck on Saturday night and run well,” Walsh said.

I’m Alex has only had the one stand start and that was when he was a youngster in his homeland, New Zealand, but Walsh wasn’t too concerned about him behind the tapes

“It isn’t any problem for him as he has stepped well in New Zealand before. He is a quiet, well-mannered horse so I don’t think the stand will be an issue,” she said. “We also have Brian Gath and he is an excellent driver.”

Echuca being a tight, turning track would also play to Im Alex's favour, Walsh said.

“He loves the small tracks. He was a horse-of-the-year at Penrith, which is small just like Echuca, so it’s perfect for him.”

Walsh didn’t single out any rival as her main danger believing all challengers capable of winning, but she was excited about the opportunities come Saturday night.

It is going to be a bumper night of racing, which features the resumption of outstanding five-year-old San Carlo in race eight. There will be a host of on-track entertainment, with the first of 10 races beginning at 5.57pm.

Matt Jackson

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