Thefixer fit & ready to fire
By Jonny Turner
Trainer Regan Todd heads into Saturday’s Invercargill Cup with plenty of respect for the small but select field Thefixer clashes with.
The former New Zealand Cup winner visits his trainer’s home province on the back of a strong North Island campaign which ended with his second placing behind Copy That in the Cambridge Flying Mile.
Some might argue Thefixer will be to be dropping in class at Ascot Park after racing New Zealand’s established open class stars.
Though Todd does not fully agree with, especially considering his horse starts from the 30m back mark in Saturday’s 2700m handicap.
“I wouldn’t say it is a big drop back,” Todd said.
“I know the ones he raced up north are pretty smart – Self Assured and Copy That.”
“But the ones down south have been pretty impressive.”
“He has got to give Pembrook Playboy and horses like him 20m.”
“It is still not going to be easy to win.”
Thefixer comes into the Invercargill Cup without having raced in over three weeks.
Todd is confident his the seven-year-old’s fitness levels are where they need to be with the work he has had since.
“He had the trip home and then he was basically straight back into it.”
“He has had that racing early in the New Year and at Cambridge.”
“So I would be surprised if he has lost too much fitness.”
“He looks good, the old fella.”
Thefixer is the lone 30m marker, 10m behind 20m handicappers Vintage Cheddar and Henry Hubert.
The Canterbury pacer’s biggest threat Pembrook’s Playboy starts from the 10m mark alongside Robyns Playboy.
Todd hopes Thefixer’s usually brilliant standing start manners can help him overcome his handicap.
“In the Franklin Cup he was off 30m and he ended up pretty handy early.”
“If some of the horses in front of us were slow away it might work to our advantage.”
Pembrook Playboy is set to start favourite for the Invercargill Cup after his dazzling win in the Central Otago Cup at Winton.
The Nathan Williamson trained four-year-old left all of his Invercargill Cup rivals, except Thefixer and Franco Santino, in his wake when unleashing a brilliant finish to win last week.
Thefixer will be driven by Bob Butt, who has picked up three catch drives on the Invercargill programme.
Butt drives Robo Trouble in race 5 following the trotter’s unlucky fifth at Winton where he was denied clear running in the home straight.
Butt will also combine with A Taste Of Honey in race 8 and Better Galleon in race 9.