Horse Racing

Rain delay annoys Nick Smart


Image: Bruno Cannatelli

Coach Nick Smart has a Worsfold wet tracker ready to resume at Sandown

The reprogramming of the Sales race from a passed meeting on Sunday to a midweek card at Sandown on Wednesday caused coach Nick Smart’s frustration.

A heat of the Good Friday National Coach Series (1400m) will follow on Wednesday with the top four finishers winning a $150,000 finalist, one at 1200m and one at 1500m at Sale on Good Friday.

Smart had prepared Worsfold to run his first sale on Sunday in the heavy rain road conditions he preferred, but heavy rain forced the meeting to be cancelled.

Fortunately, the Sunday heat of the Country Coach Series has been rescheduled to Wednesday.

“It was a bit frustrating,” Smart said.

“We waited two years to get him on a heavy road, praying for rain. It came, and they called them away.

“Look, Sandown will be back (good) 4am, which isn’t very good, but he’ll be running as long as it’s not toned more than that.

“It’s a (soft) year now and even if they upgrade it, there’s bound to be some good juice in it.

“A bit of rain is forecast for the Easter weekend, so we’re hoping to get that for the final.”

Smart says a top-four finish will help Worsfold reach the final, and the trainer hopes the gel will line up in the Sale nine days later.

“He’s a horse with a lot of ability but he hasn’t had much luck,” Smart said.

“I hope he’ll be there, but it won’t be a bother if we get beaten, as it will save us a few kilos in the final.”

Smart said he chose the Country Trainers Series Finals over the 1500m as a fitting contest, and the $150,000 prize money makes it so appealing.

“You don’t get too many standard $80,000 odd $80,000 races for the winner,” Smart said.

Apprentice Logan McGill made the trip on Wednesday, reducing Worsfold’s weight to 59.5kg.



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