A tough task
- 07 September 2017
By Michael Guerin
The numbers suggest No Doctor Needed faces a tough task at Cambridge tonight but dig a little deeper and its impossible to go past the star of the show in the Te Awamutu Cup.
The warm favourite faces a 30m backmark in the 2700m standing start, never an easy disadvantage to overcome on a track where being handy is almost always beneficial.
Add that to the fact he has one placing from two starts on the track and he hasn’t won in seven starts since January and you could start thinking twice about taking what will be short odds.
But the 30m could be very much negated by the fact the two horses off the front line will be at long odds and are both on the unruly, while the potential second favourite Northview Hustler is a five-race winner of $63,000 yet only gets a 10m start from No
Doctor Needed, who has won 12 races and over $250,000.
As for the formline, No Doctor Needed spent the second half of last season racing in Sydney where after two wins he lost form at Menangle but he looked very sharp when second to stablemate Better B Amazed fresh-up at Alexandra Park last start, only going down in the last 10m.
He clearly looks happy to be back with red hot trainer Steve Telfer.
And as for his Cambridge record of one placing in two starts? Well, No Doctor Needed’s only starts there has been in the last two Cambridge Flying Miles and he has finished third to Lazarus and Christen Me in one and fourth to The Orange Agent,
Ohoka Punter and Franco Nelson in the other.
Add that to the confidence of the king of Cambridge Raceway, David Butcher, and No Doctor Needed picks himself.
“It’s never easy to win here from a backmark but I think he might be too good for them,” says Butcher.
“If one or two miss away then he could be handy on the outer with a lap to go but even if he settles last he might be too quick for these horses.
“I thought Northview Hustler and Valor Lustre were probably the dangers.” Butcher trains the backmarker in the main trot, Sunset Beach, with son Ben to drive and he expects an improved performance.
“She hasn’t had much luck and to be honest I have had a few problems getting the right amount of work into her.
“I have stepped her workload up this week and expect her to go better. But it would be nice to get past a few early, which could happen in a field like this.”