Premiership winner jockey Nash Rawiller will be hoping to re-establish a winning combination when he teams up with speedster Rain Affair in the Group 3 $125,000 Missile Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on Saturday.
Rawiller was aboard Rain Affair for his initial win on debut at Canterbury back in October, 2010 and has been called upon by trainer Joe Pride to help break the six year old’s winning drought.
Since his first win with Rawiller, Rain Affair has scored on another ten occasions, but has failed to enter the winner’s stall since taking out the Group 2 $175,000 Parramatta Leagues Club Challenge Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill in March, 2012.
After winning three times at Group 2 level, including his latest win, Pride decided to test Rain Affair at the next level, and even though he failed to win a Group 1 race, he was runner-up on four occasions.
In April last year he was beaten a head by Master Of Design in the Group 1 $1m Darley T J Smith Stakes (1200m) and followed that up with a second to Atlantic Jewel in the Group 1 $400,000 Yarraman Park All Aged Stakes (1400m), both at Randwick.
Rain Affair struggled in the Spring last year but was back on his game with a second to All To Hard in the this year’s All Aged Stakes in April then was runner-up to Your Song in the Group 1 $400,000 Bundaberg Distilling Co. BTC Cup (1200m) at Eagle Farm during the Brisbane Winter Carnival.
Pride is confident that Rain Affair is primed to re-enter the winner’s stall after a nine and a quarter length barrier trial win at Randwick last Friday plus the booking of Rawiller is a great bonus.
“Having Nash is also a bonus,” Pride told The DailyTelegraph.
“He needs a win big time. I don’t think this horse is ever going to give up on me, but a win would be nice for him and the connections, just to remind the camp he’s still got it there.”
Nominations for The Missile Stakes include stablemate Title, grand sprinter Hay List, Oakleigh Plate winner Mrs Onassis, Group 1 winner Atomic Force, Centennial Park and Mic Mac.