Local hopes with Deus Ex

By Jonny Turner

Roxburgh trainers Geoff and Jude Knight have Deus Ex primed and ready to run a big race on his home track in Monday’s Roxburgh Cup.

A usually reliable standing start beginner, the five-year--old was slow away before recovering to run a respectable sixth behind Ragazzo Mach in his last start in the Wairio Cup.

Deus Ex made a clean beginning in a trial at Cromwell last week, raising hopes he can get it right and put himself in on the speed in Monday’s feature from his 10m handicap.

“He is looking really good, his races have been really consistent,” Geoff Knight said.

“His trial at Cromwell wasn’t up to the competition he is up against [on Monday] but he did trial very, very well.”

“With a clean beginning – which I think he will get from 10m, he will sit there by himself – he will be right in it.”

Deus Ex takes on a smart field including last year’s Roxburgh Cup winner in Enchantee.

The Nick Le Lievre trained mare looks extremely well placed to make it back to back wins from the front line of the 2700m feature.

Enchantee comes into the Roxburgh Cup after hitting the line strongly after being trapped on the markers for most of her last start in the Group 1 Queen Of Hearts at Alexandra Park.

Standout, Memphis Tennessee, Freddiesam and A Bettor Act all look genuine winning hopes in a wide-open race.

Deus Ex is among six horses Matthew Williamson will drive at Roxburgh on Monday.

He rates Holy Havoc, who starts from barrier 1 on the second row of the mobile in, race 11 as one of his best chances.

Following out a leading contender in Mr Clooney should help the 5yr-old get a handy run.

“It maps real nice for him, he ran a better race last start.”

“He has just got into the right sort of rating and the right form.”

“He is an eachway chance.”

Williamson also drives the consistent Horse Of Course in race 3.

The six-year-old is a reliable trotter, who generally begins well and settles handy to the pace.

“He is competitive in these kind of races, it does come down to what kind of trip he gets.”

“He should be a good chance.”

Williamson combines again with another consistent type in race 5 in Adhara.

“It is a front runners track and she likes to get handy.”

“This looks like her day.”

“She is not going to get it easier than this, so she should be a good chance.”

Williamson combined with Canterbury trainer Trent Yesberg for a winning double at Motukarara last week.

Yesberg has one horse lining up at Roxburgh on Monday in Kusanova.

Mark Hurrell will drive the five-year-old as she starts in a junior driver’s event.

Kusanova looks a big factor in the race 7 after drawing barrier 2.

“I was thrilled with her first-up run, she was a long way back and made up a stack of ground.”

“She should improve a lot off that.

“Drawn 2 at Roxburgh, I’d like to use the draw and hopefully she will be hard to beat.”



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