News

Telfer in favour of stakes increases at 'The Park'

By Michael Guerin

Trainer Steve Telfer says the Alexandra Park stakes increases have him ready to unleash a big team for the remainder of the season but don’t be fooled into backing the one with the most senior driver.

Telfer takes six horses to Alexandra Park tonight for the first meeting of the new ATC stake levels, where most horses above maidens for $20,000 or $25,000, akin to premier meeting stakes in any other parts of the country.

“The stake increases are a huge help because it means even if your horse can run a placing or two a month they pay for themselves,” said Telfer.

“And that means winning stakes can be profit, which makes a real difference.

“So we are going to be concentrating on racing closer to home. We have a lot of younger horses and three-year-olds in work and ready to go which we have sort of aimed at for the late autumn, winter months because the stakes are great but the fields aren’t as strong.”

Telfer has three chances in tonight’s $25,000 main handicap and the stable number one driver David Butcher is on Hunter Bromac, even though both Parker and Check In are likely to be more favoured.

Telfer says punters shouldn’t be fooled into thinking Butcher is automatically on the stable’s best chances so don't follow him blindly.

“Different owners prefer different drivers and then you have different conditions for races so it isn’t always the case David is on our best chance.

“I actually can’t split them tonight, they are all good each way chances but I think Parker will step well and try and run them along.”

That standing start will be crucial for race favourite Mach Shard, whose manners have been iffy at best but looks the one to beat if he behaves.

Telfer has only had $30,000 Graduette runner Olivia Rachel (race one) for a week and likes the filly but says the race tonight is her first race right-handed which could be tricky.

“And we have two in race five. Triolet is suited by her drawing following the speed but Court On The Edge has gate speed so the second line draw negates that.”

Double Rocket looks the horse to beat in the Sales Series Graduate (race two) coming out of last Friday’s Northern Derby where he was a strong fifth.