Swayzee impresses in Menangle trial

By Adam Hamilton

Reigning New Zealand Cup hero Swayzee is primed for his long-awaited racetrack return.

The mighty six-year-old stayer impressed at his first public appearance this year when second to explosive stablemate Hi Manameisjeff in a stunning Menangle trial on Wednesday.

Swayzee finished second, just over eight metres behind Hi Manameisjeff, in the fastest trial Menangle has seen.

They went a 1min49sec flat mile with splits of 27.1, 28.4, 27.2 and 26.3sec.

Trainer Jason Grimson drove Hi Manameisjeff with Jack Trainor aboard Swayzee.

Swayzee, who won the Group 1 Blacks A Fake and NZ Cup last year, hasn’t raced since finishing a brave third to Leap To Fame in the Brisbane Inter Dominion final on December 16.

In 13 starts for Grimson, Swayzee has posted 10 wins, two thirds and a fourth.

“He’ll have one run here (Menangle) before head to Brisbane early,” Grimson said. "I’m taking a team up early and Hi Manameisjeff will be one of them, too.”

Hi Manameisjeff, who boasts nine wins from 11 starts for Grimson, was given a let-up after galloping in the early stages when seventh in the Miracle Mile on March 9.

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Champion Aussie mare Ladies In Red makes an unexpected appearance at Melton on Saturday night.

Trainer Emma Stewart is mindful of getting plenty of racing into the six-year-old mare before what shapes as her farewell racing campaign in Brisbane in July.

Ladies In Red, who was run down by former Kiwi mare Aardies Express in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Mile at Menangle last Saturday week, is a $1.20 favourite to bounce back despite a wide draw (gate six) in the Richmond Lass (1720m) at Melton.

It will be one of her last runs at Melton, where she has raced 18 times for 14 wins, including five at Group 1 level, and four seconds.

The other highlight of the Melton meeting will come in race one when potential topline trotter Ollivici chases a hat-trick of wins from a back row draw (gate nine) in the I Didnt Do It free-for-all (2240m).

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