The appeal of stand-alone regional meetings in New South Wales continues to grow, this time Scone Racing Club is set to enjoy the massive windfall.
While crowd numbers and betting turnover are the most important figures, they will surely be boosted with almost 600 horses nominated across the two day carnival.
There’s some good quality in the mix as well which should mean bigger crowds and plenty of betting interest across New South Wales and Australia.
All up there were 585 nominations with 328 coming in for the Scone Cup Day on Friday and 257 for the Saturday.
Nearly every event has a capacity field, surprisingly one of the main events the, $250,00 Scone Guineas received the fewest nominations, however there are some great performers in the 15 which have signalled their intentions.
The success of the Wagga carnival would have had members at Scone very excited but the sheer volume of interest has surprised everyone according to Scone Racing Club secretary Helen Sinclair.
“The fields are huge,” Sinclair said.
“They are really quality entries as well so the punters are going to enjoy seeing some fantastic racing.”
There were 33 entries for the Scone Cup including two former champions of the Listed $175,000 event.
Newton’s Rings (2008) and Keepin’ The Dream (2010) are both on track for a double and trainer of the 2010 champ Jim Lee has plenty of confidence he can go back to back.
“I’ve got no doubt he is going into the Scone Cup in better form this year than he did before he won the race 12 months ago,” Lee said.
“He’s absolutely flying and I think he has improved further since he won the Rowley Mile at Hawkesbury.
“I’m hoping the handicapper doesn’t give him too much weight. If he gets around 56kg-57kg, then he is in with a big chance to win the Scone Cup again.”
If either Keppin’ The Dream or Newton’s Rings can win the race they will join a rare group of two time champions including Bridge Man in 1981 and 1982 and Brave Prince in 2000 and 2001.
It will be no easy task though with he quality of the field quite outstanding.
Fanjura, Pureness, Star Of Octagonal, Snow Alert, Latin News and Torio’s Quest are just some of the recognisable names expected to make the trip to Scone.
In the Scone Guineas it’s a similar story however one horse is expected to start the race as a clear favourite.
Sincero hasn’t lost a race this season form five starts and his win on Anzac Day in the Gosford Guineas makes him the clear pick of the field.
His Wyong based trainer Stephen Farley put him through a barrier trail last week but despite Sincero’s dominant race form he’s far from cocky about his chances.
. “It hasn’t be the ideal preparation but I’m happy with the horse’s condition,” Farley said.
“The barrier trial was really only a sprint home but he came through it well. I’ll give him a bit of work [today] and he should be right for Scone.”
It’s not just the boys which are well represented either, the fillies and mares in the Dark Jewel Classic make up an imposing list.
Alverta, Hidden Wonder, Kimillsy, Palacio De Cristal, Shannara and Zingaling have all been nominated for the $175,000 event.