Better Than Ready To Be Ridden More Forward In Keith Noud Handicap

Trainer Kelly Schweida has revealed that he would like to see classy sprinter Better Than Ready ridden more forward in the Listed Keith Noud Handicap (1200m) at Eagle Farm on Saturday.

Better Than Ready will need to be at his very best to carry the top weight of 60.5kg to victory in the Keith Noud Handicap at Eagle Farm tomorrow.

Better Than Ready will need to be at his very best to carry the top weight of 60.5kg to victory in the Keith Noud Handicap at Eagle Farm tomorrow. Photo by: Daniel Costello

Better Than Ready has recorded the majority of his seven career wins with a strong run from the back of the field but was ridden closer to the pace when he scored an impressive first-up win in the Club Super Handicap (1000m) at Eagle Farm on November 9.

The More Than Ready entire will carry the top weight of 60.5kg tomorrow, against a near capacity field of 17 runners, and Schweida told Racing Ahead that he believes his star galloper needs to be towards the front of the field to give him the best chance of recording his second straight win.

“He normally gets back but with the 60 and a half kilos I don’t think he can be too far back and I would love for him to closer,” Schweida said on RSN.

“I will leave it to Ric and I guess it will depend on how the field pans out.

“There looks to be plenty of speed in the race and hopefully it breaks up a little bit but it is a big field.”

Better Than Ready showed that he had suffered no long-lasting effects from the accident he suffered at Doomben, where he ran through an outside fence, when he won his first-up start by almost two lengths but Schweida is confident that the four-year-old had improved from the run and is happy with his condition heading into the Listed event this weekend.

“It was a good effort with 60 and a half kilos and the time was quick,” Schweida said.

“The race was probably set up for him but it was a good effort.

“Everybody knew that he had a fair injury when he ran through the outside fence at Doomben one morning and he gets away on you very quickly being a stallion.

“He has certainly improved since the outing, his fitness levels have come better and it didn’t seem to take much out of him.

“Up to sixty and a half kilos again and it is probably another level up quality wise but I am pretty happy with him.”

Schweida revealed earlier in the week that Better Than Ready will be set for the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) and Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m) during the 2014 Melbourne Festival Of Racing and confirmed that the promising galloper will heading for a brief break in the spelling paddock after his run on Saturday.

“He was only ever going to have two runs and we would tip him out before bringing him back for something like the Oakleigh Plate in Melbourne,” Schweida said.

“We just thought it would be too long a break for a stallion to have six months out and he gets fat very quickly.

“He will go out after tomorrow and have a little break, not a long break, before getting ready for some of the sprints in Melbourne.”

Better Than Ready is the clear favourite in Keith Noud Handicap betting markets at odds of $2.90 from Kelso Wood-trained Someday ($6.50) and last-start winner Morning Captain ($7).

About The Author

Thomas Hackett

Thomas is a passionate and opinionated racing journalist and punter who has been obsessed with horse racing since he backed Saintly to win the 1996 Melbourne Cup. An international racing enthusiast, he has his finger on the pulse of racing news not just from Australia but all around the world.

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