Code Word has become one of the most talked about racehorses in New South Wales over the last few months and his reign of impressive performances could well continue at Royal Randwick tomorrow.
The John Marzol trained runner will race in the One Club, One ATC Membership Handicap over 2400m against a good quality field.
He’ll be representing his small Moruya base stables against the might of Chris Waller and Peter Snowden’s Darley operation.
Marzol has a team of just 20 horses in work and only four of them have managed to gain a start at metro level this season.
Code Word has been by far the best of them and his consistency at Saturday grade had paid off recently with a couple of good wins.
His total season earnings stand at over $70,000, a great result for Marzol but it is a mere drop in the ocean compared to Chris Waller who has lined up 711 Sydney starters for 109 winners and more than $7.2 million in prize money this season alone.
Despite this the country team is far from running scared, they’ve beaten the big boys before and they’re confident they can do it again.
Last start at Rosehill Gardens Code Word ran second to The Verminator over 2000m, in the process beating home Mikiyama and Telesmon.
He’s never contested a 2400m event but the signs are all good according to his trainer.
“The way he has been getting home in his races I think he will run 2400m – I wouldn’t have him in the race otherwise,” Marzol said.
“Peck, the one of Peter Snowden’s, does look hard to beat.
“But we have Blake Spriggs to ride Code Word and take a couple of kilograms off the horse’s back.
“Code Word has beaten Mikiyama a couple of times this preparation. We gave him 3.5kg last time and there is only a half-kilo difference (tomorrow). You wouldn’t think he can beat Code Word with that weight but you know what racing is like – you just never know.”
Code Word was once trained in Sydney at the start of his career but he was considered no good and sold off.
Marzol bought the horse, previously trained by Gerald Ryan, in April of this year.
It’s something he’s done successfully in the past as well with horses such as Flying Along who won the Narooma Town Plate & Moruya Town Plate as well as Regal Celeb who won the Moruya Cup, Narrandera Cup and Gundagai Cup.
The four year old gelding had won just twice from 17 starts before being picked up by Marzol, since then he’s had six starts for three wins and two placings,
“We paid $35,000 plus ($3000) commission for him so he’s done his job,” Marzol said.
“He’s just a gem to train. Other horses can be difficult to train but he’s not – he pulls up really well after a race, comes home, eats everything and just gets on with it.”