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Alpha Cup preview

By Kobie O'Brien

Fordham Park Alpha plays host to a mammoth 7 race card for the first time in history this Saturday, giving punters plenty to anticipate.

The $20,000 Alpha Community Cup over 1700m will headline the day, strongly supported by a very impressive program.

Alpha Jockey Club president Kevin Wiltshire is expecting a big turn out with the Alpha looking to again showcase the biggest race day in the states Central West.

“We’re expecting anywhere between 1500-2000 people,” Wiltshire said.

“The class B has been split so we are having an extra race, making it a seven-race program.”

In conjunction with the strong fields and big turnout expected, Wilshire has also been impressed by the turn out for the Friday night Calcutta in recent times as well as other attractions.

“She’s a fair show Friday night, you’d want be on your toes.” He said.

“The fashions on the field has one of the greatest prize money pools in the region as well.”

The day kicks off at 1:00pm with the Duncan’s Earthmoving QTIS Maiden plate over 1000m.

Past Winners

2013:
6. Choirs (3) SP: $4.75

J: Robert Faehr T: Bevan Johnson

Tale Of The Cat (USA) x Midnight Choir (Danehill (USA))

2014:

6. Slysera (7) SP: $4.50

J: Nathan Evans T: Ron Macrae

Hidden Dragon x Sera (Regal Classic (CAN))

2015:
3. A Dependant (8) SP: $6.00

J: Tracy O'Hara T: Charlie Prow

Garrison Savannah (NZL) x Pendant (Alannon)

2016:

4. Preen Queen (4) SP: $8.00

J: Alex Lawrence T: Bill Trimble

Power Of Destiny x Frileux (Intergaze)

2017:

2. A Dependant (1) SP: $6.00

J: Emma Bell T: Dennis O'Brien

Garrison Savannah (NZL) x Pendant (Alannon)

2018 Alpha Cup Preview

1. KING MAX (1) (Fred Smith) J: Ms Elyce Smith (a1.5/54kg)

Cannot argue with recent form and certainly the class of the field. Comes here from Saturday metro grade behind consistent city winners I Feel Good and Ready for Danger. Beat Group 2-placed Top Ravine and ex-Victorian Rocksetta three back and much easier here. Placed in 9 of 12 goes at a mile or more. First ever go in the dirt and first time at a non-tab.

2. TUXEDO BOY (2) (Brendan Richardson) J: Brooke Richardson

Very impressive when winning consecutive races at Barcaldine and Emerald over a mile before excuses in latest. Six lengths off Fastnet Flyer and Chivadahlii at Mackay, both Northern cups chances. Beat Helluva Hoffa by seven lengths in that run. Didn’t cope with 65.5kg last start. Best is very competitive.

3. MURPHY’S HUSTLER (7) (Bevan Johnson) J: Adin Thompson (a3/52kg)

From leading stable in country circuits, stable mate to last year’s favourite Fab’s Cowboy. Beat Tuxedo Boy last time out and painless win at Gladstone before hand. Too good for Timetus at Quilpie who was a subsequent Battle of the Bush contender. Won a provincial TAB at Kilcoy over 1900m back in January and will stay. Loves the dirt, eats up the distance and will be a big show.

4. OAKFIELD MIDNIGHT (4) (Tom Button) J: Ms Natalea Summers

Danger signs for anyone when Tom Button brings a horse to a country cup; it will be there to win. Coming off a 6-lengh-demolition job in the Bluff Cup, Oakfield Midnight gets a similar track and distance here and will looking for a repeat performance. Recently won well at Emerald over a mile and brings similar Rockhampton form to King Max, with runs behind Rocksetta, Let Me Say This, Flat To Stack and a mere 1L off metro winner Kuttamurra Al last start. Will be thundering down the outside late.

5. OUR BEATNIK (NZ) (6) (Mark Oates) J: Luke Dillon

NSW Metro winner who has been perhaps under-performed lately since honest performances at Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast and Doomben late last year. Beat Stylish Luck, Murphy’s Hustler and Tuxedo Boy at Barcaldine two runs back but has since failed as odds-on pop at Longreach, beaten almost three-lengths by Menacing. Struggling in CL2 and BM60 company and beaten by almost 7 in Aramac, needs to be better to be in it.

6. MENACING (9) (David Rewald) J: Miss Alisha Ross (a3/50kg)

Out to 1700 a big plus after winning last 2 over a mile. Not too many other upsides. Won twice at the Sunny Coast on heavy. Very hard track here. Likely leader?

7. CHAMPAGNE TALES (8) (David Rewald) J: David Rewald

Over five lengths off Menacing in latest. Not getting any easier here. Probably much better than recent form suggests however, beat Billy Johnson’s Thin Disguise back in March and has contended with the likes of De Villiers, Bush Caviar and Doubos. 1.2 lengths 3rd in this race last year. Can expect a sharp improvement.

8. PALMERA LAD (10) (Mark Johnstone) J: Nathan Fazackerley (a2/54.5kg)

Ran in a 1950m BM70 at Morphetville three starts back and finished 5th at the same track over 2035m back in February. Will find the 1700 a breeze and you would assume he will be there in the end if he handles the track. Beaten four lengths by Gallic Chieftain and Goathland when the track record was broken at Pakenham and placed over the 2040 at Moonee Valley. Beaten four lengths at Cunnamulla in first county QLD start. Group 3 placed early on.

9. STYLISH LUCK (3) (Todd Austin) J: Matthew Gray

Yet to win past 1550m but working up well lately with a win over 1300 before solid performances over 1400 and 1600 in most recent goes. Finished last at this track back in March and 9th of 10 on this day last year behind Sammy Sparrow. Handy North Queensland form early on but looking elsewhere here.

10. MISHANI CENTURION (5) (Clint Austin) J: Stanley Watkin

Hasn’t won since the 2nd of July 2016 at Oak Park. Did run 3rd to Emerald 100 winner Outback Pirate at Tambo last year but hasn’t threatened since. Not likely.