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Trainer Clinton Austin eyeing second Blackall Cup with Burden

Barcoo-Amateur-12-FB.jpgBy Jordan Gerrans

With brother Todd already qualified for George Moore Stakes day at Doomben later this year, Clinton Austin will be aiming to do the same and, in the process, claim his second ever hometown Blackall Cup this Saturday afternoon.

The Austin brothers are prolific trainers in the Central West region of Queensland, with former jockey and now trainer Todd basing himself at Barcaldine and Clinton remaining at Blackall.

The brothers have three chances in Saturday’s Blackall Cup, which will double as a Country Cups Challenge qualifier for later this year in Brisbane.

The Austins are stalwarts of racing in the area and to Clinton’s knowledge, they have all only ever been successful in the Cup on one occasion, with a galloper named after the Italian soccer club – Fiorentina.

On that occasion, some 30 years ago, Clinton was the owner, Todd the jockey and their father Ken trained Fiorentina, Clinton recalls.

With three chances this Saturday, they will have as good a chance as ever to claim a second Blackall Cup, with Clinton hopeful Burden can continue his consistent form – not being outside of the money in his last six efforts.

“He tries,” Clinton said.

“He is a good horse – end of story – there is not much else I can say about him about that. He is a good horse and he is in this race right up to his ears.”

In the Cup – to be run over 1400 metres for $10,000 – Todd starts stable mates Doom and Kedleston, while Clinton has Burden coming from the widest barrier in the seven horse field on the dirt track.

“The wide barrier certainly does not help when we are racing at Blackall, that is a real problem,” Clinton said.

“They just keep turning here, it will be hard but we will just leave it jockey Timmy Brummell – I hope he can just slot in behind the leaders.

“He gets a good run to the half mile but then never stops turning.”

Barcoo-Amateur-09-FB.jpgThe Clinton Austin stable heads to Blackall Cup day with a team of five, which the trainer felt three or four were genuine winning chances before they drew wide at the barrier draw.

If Burden, who was previously trained by Stuart Kendrick and Adrian Coome, was to get up and qualify for the CCC Final, the nine-time career winner would almost immediately head to Brisbane.

Burden would be on a truck straight away, Clinton explained, to Michael Lakey’s stable at Deagon where he would have a month or so lead-in to the $105,000 Final over a mile.

If Burden cannot get the chocolates this Saturday, Clinton would consider heading to the Roma qualifier later this year in a second bid to get into the Final.

Todd Austin, who grew up in Blackall before relocating to Barcaldine to further his riding career many years ago, qualified his emerging stable star Wall Street Tycoon for the $75,000 Country Stampede Final for 2021 earlier this month at Cloncurry.

The Country Cups Challenge Final and Country Stampede Final will be run on the same day at Doomben – December 4 – with Todd in line to have runners in each of the bush feature races.

Last-start winner Kedleston will be ridden by hoop Brooke Richardson in the Blackall Cup, who was on board as Wall Street Tycoon won at Cloncurry last week, and has struck up a strong relationship with the stable.

“Brooke does a fantastic job,” Todd said.

“She rides a lot of work for me and knows the horses inside and out.

“She is a great work rider and a great jockey, as you can see.”

Of the 49 acceptors across the six-race card at Barcoo Amateur Race Club this Saturday, 11 will be trained by an Austin – five for Clinton, five for Todd and one for Ken.

Country Stampede qualifiers take a break this weekend with three CCC qualifiers to run across the state at Blackall, Innisfail and Wondai.

Todd Austin Next Racing
Clinton Austin Next Racing