2011 Taree Cup – preview, comment, tips, prices and ratings

By: Chris Bassani
December 18th, 2011

Taree trainer Nick Chambers always believed Island Dane would run a strong 2000m and the proof may come in today’s $50,000 Taree Cup (4.55pm EST).

The Home On The GrangeBloomers (Blazing Saddles) gelding is a four-time winner at 1600m and now as a six-year-old tackles the longer journey for the first time.

Island Dane, a $9.50 chance with TABsportsbet, will be Chambers first runner in the local Cup.

He trains a team of 13 horses with Island Dane being one of the better money spinners.

The bay gelding has won 10 races but significantly seven have been at Taree.

“There’s not much of him but he’s just a real racehorse, loves it,” Chambers said.

Chambers admitted the Taree Cup was somewhat of an afterthought.

“It’s usually run in August but after he won second-up over 1200 metres I knew he’d come up well and decided to target the Cup.

“He’s won several times over 1600 metres. I’ve always believed he’d handle 2000 metres.”

Island Dane comes into the Cup at his fifth run this campaign and he has won two of his past three starts.

“A lot of people said he fell in last start at Taree but he wasn’t concentrating,” Chambers said.

“When he saw the other horse (Marlu Gold) coming, he pricked his ears, knuckled down again and fought back to win.

“He’s pulled up really well, looks terrific.

“He’s in great order.

“My only query is he may be one run short for the 2000 metres.

“I missed a run at Scone with him but he won’t lie down.

“He’ll give his all.”

Cup favourite $4.40 is the Allan Denham trained Striving who ticks most boxes coming into the Cup.

He has won at 2000m, is bringing in good form and will appreciate Robert Thompson aboard and the Good 3 rated track.

He has drawn reasonably well in 10 but is yet to race at Taree.


  • 1 Rodeo Playboy: Ridden upside down when led last time and well beaten. Won previous at Coffs Harbour and Kempsey. Likes dry ground but yet to win at the track in five starts. Rating 6 Price $6.
  • 2. Blinkin Easy: Second in the race last year. Big step up in distance from 1200m to 2000m and drawn poorly. Okay at best but a few negatives. Rating 5 Price $8.
  • 3. Aristocratico: Combine the beaten margins at his past six starts and he has been beaten 55 lengths. Poor form and not won since November 2009. Rating 1. Price $26. 
  • 4. Island Dane: Great Taree record having won seven races here and won two of past three starts. Best with sting out of ground and a 2000m query. Rating 6. Price $9.50.
  • 5. Tee Tee Dancer: Comes into the race with good form, likes dry ground and is a Taree winner. Only query is first run at 2000m. Good draw. Respect. Rating 7. Price $5.
  • 6. Striving: Likes dry ground. Comes into the race with strong form, is a winner at 2000m and good riding engagement. First start at Taree. Rating 8. Price $4.40.
  • 7. Castlemagne King:  Won two of past three starts. Wide draw but gets back in the field anyway. Good on dry ground and consistent. Good eachway bet. Rating 7. Price $10.
  • 8 Swindle: Likes to settle near the lead. Likes dry ground. Runner up at lone start this track and has won up to 1850m and placed at 2000m. Eachway hope. Rating 6. Price $10.
  • 9. Homenow: Has won both starts at this track and distance. Is a last start winner and likes dry ground. Possibly a class factor but ticks a lot of boxes and wouldn’t dismiss. Rating 7. Price $13.
  • 10. Perlaact: Doesn’t win out of turn (four wins from 33 starts) but has won here and handles dry ground. Has placed beyond 2000m and good draw. One for trifectas. Rating 6. Price $13.
  • 11. Wannabe: Good at the distance and likes Taree and dry tracks. Having just its third run from a spell with 1250m and 1500m the previous two. Jumps quickly to 2000m and drawn wide. Rating 4. Price $71.
  • 12. Gothic Gold. Has won at 2000m but poor Taree record (one placing in eight starts) and has drawn wide. Prefers the sting out of the ground. Rating 3. Price $31.
  • 13. Hydrophilic: Nicely drawn but only five wins in 57 starts. Place twice in three at Taree. Prefers heavy tracks. Willk handle the trip. Rating 4. Price $$35.
  • 14. Stage Left: Has won at Taree and over 2000m Best runs have been on slow and heavy tracks though a dual winner on dry. Good draw. Needs it wetter. Rating 3. Price $35.
  • 15. Husisname: Good draw, won at 2000m though placed twice in seven starts at Taree. Three wins in 57 starts. Place best. Rating 4. Price $71.
  • 16. King Lyphard: Has won here and 2000m okay but an 11-year-old. Not won since  whose best form has been on wet ground.  Not won a a track rated good since November 2006. Rating 2. Price $71.

Tips: Striving 1, Castlemagne King 2, Homenow 3 Island Dane 4.

Of $50,000.1st $32,500, 2nd $10,000, 3rd $4,500, 4th $2,000, 5th $1,000, Starter Subsidy $200
Quality, Minimum Weight 55.5kg, Weight Raised 2.5kg, Apprentices cannot claim.
BOBS&BOBS Extra Bonus available: $10,000Field Limit: 16 + 4 EM


No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Penalty Hcp Rating
1 0135736119 RODEO PLAYBOY John B Scott Terry Treichel 7 57kg 73
2 9020324634 BLINKIN EASY Ruth Cooper Matthew Bennett 17 55.5kg 70
3 X7X306X007 ARISTOCRATICO Gayna Williams Matthew Dracos 14 55kg 69
4 40799X8151 ISLAND DANE Nick Chambers Ms Alison Threadwell (a) 12 53.5kg 66
5 280X818143 TEE TEE DANCER Fred Cowell Serg Lisnyy (a) 4 53kg 68
6 631X532264 STRIVING Allan Denham Robert Thompson 10 53kg 65
7 1222556151 CASTLEMAGNE KING Basil Ryan Glenn Lynch 13 53kg 64
8 X02X481625 SWINDLE Glenn Moore Raymond Spokes 11 53kg 64
9 7250338421 HOMENOW Jenny Graham Ms Belinda Hodder (a) 9 53kg 59
10 0416694232 PERLAACT Greg Drury Scott Thurlow 6 53kg 57
11 8901261X80 WANNABE Bob Graham Peter Graham 15 53kg 57
12 83185X8681 GOTHIC GOLD Margaret De Gonneville Pietro Romeo 16 53kg 53
13 3505254778 HYDROPHILIC Max Boland Allan Chau 2 53kg 53
14 79880X0377 STAGE LEFT Tas Morton Ms Alex Stokes (a) 5 53kg 52
15 051X853984 HUSISNAME Noel Boland Matthew Paget 1 53kg 49
16 0225844285 KING LYPHARD Tess Wilkes Ms Samantha Munro (a) 8 53kg 47
17e 6089974154 WRATTONBULLY Michael Byers SCR 3 53kg 42



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