Toowoomba trainer Norm Hilton is hoping history can repeat it itself when his top sprinter Bold Glance steps out in the Listed $80,000 PMP Ascot Handicap (1200m) at Eagle Farm.
Bold Glance won the Ascot two years ago after finishing well down the track when sixth to super sprinter Hay List in the Group 3 $175,000 W J Healy Stakes (1200m) at Eagle Farm and Hilton is hoping a similar plan will see Bold Glance return to winning form.
The six year old resumed from a spell after undergoing a throat operation and after travelling just behind the leaders faded to finish ninth to River Lad in this year’s Healy Stakes on June 23.
“He ran OK first up. He was just short of a run and I expect a big improvement on Saturday,” Hilton said.
“We missed out on trialling him in the lead-up. Every other time he’s won first up he’s had a good trial leading into it and we didn’t get it this time.”
Hilton explained that Bold Glance’s poor form earlier in the year was a result of a breathing problem which has been corrected with surgery.
“He had an entrapped epiglottis, which is a flap in the throat that opens and closes,” Hilton said.
“It was getting trapped closed. In the Gold Coast Stakes (jockey) Dean Tanti said when he put him under pressure he started making a noise.”
“We had him scoped that week and we had to operate on it.”
Bold Glance has been forced to carry heavy weights after winning eight from thirty-three starts and has been allocated 59kg topweight for the Ascot with all but three runners on the 54kg minimum.
“He gets a lot of weight wherever we take him,” Hilton said.
“You either have a crack at those real hard Group races, or get stuck with 59kg in races like this.”
“I’m hoping we can get back to his best form. He’s well in himself, happy and keen to work,”
The Gerald Ryan trained Adnocon and Robert Heathcote’s Griffon are the only other runners not on the minimum but look the main threats to Bold Glance.
Ryan elected to bypass the Listed $175,000 Reed Property Group Glasshouse Handicap (1400m) at the Sunshine Coast last week with Adnocon because of the heavy track after finishing a close third to Belltone in the Listed $175,000 City Of Ipswich Eye Liner Stakes (1350m) at Ipswich on June 16.
While Griffon produced a stunning first up win in the Listed $80,000 David Jones Lightning Handicap (1000m) at Eagle Farm on June 9 before running home late again for third to River Lad in the Healy.
Hilton also has his eye on next week’s Grafton Carnival with stablemates Carry Me Bluey and Norocos to carry the flag for the stable.
Carry Me Bluey has also been struggling to find form and Hilton thinks he will be suited in the $50,000 Black Auto South Grafton Cup (1600m) at Grafton on Sunday and Norocos will run in the 1000m Sir James Kirby next Thursday.
“Carry Me Bluey struck a couple of wet tracks that he didn’t appreciate and has been running good races in better company,” Hilton said.