Green rolls out his new star tonight
By Garrick Knight
The hottest favourite on mile night at Alexandra Park this evening is also Ray Green’s great, white hope for the season.
In a climate where he and the Lincoln Farms top brass are sending a numerous horses to Australia, he’s looking forward to taking one to the races full of expectations.
That horse is Line Up and despite a wide berth in the R52-55 event tonight, he will start an unbackable $1.15 favourite with bookies.
“He’s got a lot of potential, this horse,” Green told HRNZ.
“Potentially he could be a very serious racehorse, actually.
“But we’ve been down this track before with plenty of horses so I’m not getting carried away just yet.
“He’s right up there with anything else I’ve targeted the feature three-year-old races with though.”
While he has only won one of four, recent trial efforts have confirmed the suspicions long-held by both Green and driver Zachary Butcher.
“He’s inexperienced so we’ve been trying to school him at the trials. Making a racehorse out of him.
“He had the full blinds on up until now, but the time has come for them to be removed.”
Line Up had one start as a two-year-old for a stylish win back in February before being put aside, though the temptation was great for Green to push on.
“I’d liked to have.
“But he had a few a growing pains, then got sick and I guess we could have medicated and pressed on, but I thought better of it.
“We had Perfect Stride and a few others racing at the time and I always knew he would be better at three.”
Line Up was a $130,000 purchase at the Karaka yearling sale last year by Green and John Street, but in an interesting turn of events, he was sold to stable clients Emilio and Mary Rosati at the start of the year.
“It’s fair to say it cost them a lot of money to buy him off us.
“Emilio had purchased the full brother, Typhoon Stride, the year before.”
Both horses are full brothers to former star mare, Partyon.
As for tactics tonight, Green says that is purely and solely the responsibility of Butcher.
“I don’t try and coerce Zac to do anything; the tactics he adopts are his own.
“So, I’m not sure how he’ll play things.”
With a lack of quality inside him over the short trip, it’s a solid bet Butcher will likely fancy his chances of putting Line Up in the race early and dominating from the top end.
Green takes three others to ‘The Park tonight, the best of them being consistent mare The Empress ($3.50), who trialed well in the strongest heat of the day at Franklin Park last Saturday.
She’s come up with what will be an advantageous draw at one the second line given the horse in front of her, Court On The Edge, has clearly the most gate speed of anything on the front line.
“I’ve got a lot of time for her; she’s a very nice mare.
“If she gets the trip behind Court On The Edge, she’ll be right there.”
Double Or Nothing ($3.10) is quickly becoming the punters’ enemy, being beaten as the first or second favourite six times in his career to date.
Still, he’s placed in eight of 11 runs so can’t be knocked for his consistency.
“He’s won $20,000 without winning a race. One day the penny will drop and he will win them in a row, but I couldn’t tell you if that will be this week.”
Rounding out the team is Bettor My Dreamz ($26) who, despite drawing the coveted ace under the race’s preferential conditions, find himself with the short end of the stick in the night’s feature race.
“Don’t get me started on this subject,” says Green.
“He shouldn’t be in that race; he’s won three and is against horses that have won nine or ten.
“He’s a handy horse but he’s up against it in that field.”