Hunter eyes an historic win
Brilliant Albany sprinter Dream Lifter will have to create history to win a second Mungrup Stud Sprint (1300m) at Mt Barker Turf Club on Sunday, with no horse carrying more than 58.5kg to victory in the history of the feature race.
Dream Lifter will lump 59.5kg as the top weight in the field of 12, and if successful, will set a new weight-carrying benchmark in the race after Impressive Stats carried 58.5kg to win in 2005.
Trained by Paul Hunter, who will be chasing his third Mungrup Stud Sprint title, Dream Lifter resumed from a spell with a powerful fourth in the listed Summer Scorcher (1000m), beaten by just a length.
Despite the heavy impost and barrier 9, Hunter said his star galloper was flying ahead of the second-up assignment.
“We’re happy with him; his work has been really good,” Hunter said.
“The weight and barrier makes it difficult, but we’re really pleased with him. “His first-up run, we thought, was enormous, but he’s going to have to lift again this week.
“This is the one sprint race everyone wants to win — it should be a listed race and we think he is going really good.”
The seven-year-old has won eight of his 21 starts, triumphing last year with 55kg, and he will look to join Ringroad as the only horse to have won the sprint feature in consecutive years.
Meanwhile, leading Albany trainer Roy Rogers will persist with a two-pronged attack in his chase at a maiden Mungrup Stud Sprint after accepting with both Potent Secret and Candlelight Star.
Potent Secret has been in terrific form this campaign, won the Summer Scorcher on the back of a second in the R.S Crawford Stakes (1000m) before a luckless ninth in last Saturday’s listed feature, the Miss Andretti Stakes (1100m), where he was caught wide throughout.
Candlelight Star has risen to prominence quickly this preparation, taking out a graduation race at Ascot and then defeating Baraki Beats in a 72+ rating race over 1200m before flashing home to run third in the Miss Andretti.
“They have both pulled up well from the other day even after tough runs,” Rogers said.
“I’m leaning towards the grey; he has come on very good this prep.
“His run last week topped him off — fitness wise, he is at his peak and the distance suits.
“There is a question mark on Potent Secret at the distance, but Ben (Kennedy)has won eight from nine on the horse, so he could be the X-factor.”
Kennedy will return from a holiday to reunite with Potent Secret, which has drawn barrier 2, and will lump 57.5kg, one of just three horses above the 54kg minimum. In-form hoop Jerry Noske will ride Candlelight Star, which has the 54kg and from gate 5.
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