Trainer Chris Waller is happy with the condition of both Secessio and Hoylonny heading into the 2014 Grafton Cup and he does not think there is anything between his two gallopers heading in the Listed event this afternoon.
Secessio failed to run out the trip when he was stepped up to 3200 metres for the first time in the Stayers Cup (3200m) at Royal Randwick on June 7, but he bounced back to his best form to score a narrow victory over Hoylonny in the Listed Winter Cup (2400m) at Rosehill Gardens on June 28.
Waller told Sky Racing HQ that Secessio is a consistent performed and he is confident that the Konigstiger gelding will produce another strong effort in the Grafton Cup this afternoon.
“It was a good run and he had freshened up nicely off the two mile race a couple of weeks before, so it was good to see him return to form,” Waller said.
“He didn’t win by a big margin, but he got the job done.
“He is no superstar, but he is very competitive and that will be the case today.”
Hoylonny has not scored a race win since he took out the Wingham Handicap (1900m) at Rosehill Gardens on November 16 last year and he made a slow start to his winter campaign before returning to his best form in the Winter Cup.
Waller admits that it has taken Hoylonny a while to return to the form that he is capable of, but be believes that the son of Lonhro can build on his impressive effort in the Winter Cup and maintain his good form.
“From memory he was third-up that day and he should be at his peak today,” Hoylonny said.
“It was a good run and it was a good ride; he whipped around them halfway from home and almost held them off.
“He is a tricky horse to get right, but when he is right he normally holds his form.
“There is nothing between them really.”
Waller also included Permit and Mulaqen in the Grafton Cup acceptances, but they have been scratched and will run in the Banjo Pateron Series Final (2600m) at Flemington on Saturday.
Queenstown ($3.10) remains a clear favourite in 2014 Grafton Cup betting markets, while Secessio ($6.50) is on the second line of betting from Hoylonny ($7).