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By Glenn Davis
Townsville trainer Alby Molino will continue his quest for another country feature with a two-pronged attack in the Cairns Cup at Cannon Park on Friday.
Molino will saddle up Mackay Cup winner Best Hoffa - who drew barrier seven - and Guangzhou jumping from barrier 14 in the 2100-metre feature.
Molino began training as a hobby 15 years ago before becoming a full-time trainer five years ago.
He works for Ergon Energy as an emergency response crew member which enables him to continue to train full time.
“I work a 9am to 5.30pm shift most days which allows me time to do the horses in the morning and after work,” Molino said.
“I’ve got seven horses in work and my last winner was Best Hoffa in the Mackay Cup last month.
“Best Hoffa was my first Cup horse but he was injured and ran fifth in the Mackay Cup last year before he had another go and won it last month.”
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Best Hoffa subsequently finished seventh to the John Manzelmann-trained Shiranda in the Townsville Cup over 2000 metres two weeks ago.
“It was a good win in the Mackay Cup but for some reason he got too far back in the Townsville Cup,” Molino said.
“He jumped from barrier 7 but at the 1300 metres he was 17 lengths off them and he only got beaten three lengths.”
Molino rates Best Hoffa, a Les Tilley mount, as his best hope in the Cairns Cup but is not ruling out Guangzhou’s chances.
Guangzhou will be ridden by highly rated former South African apprentice Marnu Potgieter, who Molino believes has a bright future in Australian racing.
“I think Guangzhou is a real good lightweight chance and he ran third carrying topweight to North Afrika last run,” Molino said.
“Marnu is a very promsing apprentice and he handles him well.
“It’s just a matter if he can slot him over into a good spot from his wide alley.”
Guangzhou, like Best Hoffa was formerly trained in Tolga by Roy Chillemi, and is coming off a last start third to North Afrika over 2000 metres at Townsville on August 14.
Both Best Hoffa and Guangzhou are part-owned by Cairns Jockey Club president Tom Hedley.
Cairns | Cairns Jockey Club | 4:48 PM