Lowly class 1 races are seldom the highlight of any thoroughbred meeting but there could be an exception at Spreyton on Sunday.
The injury was quite severe and, on our vet's advice, we gave him plenty of time to recoverManaging owner Denise Martin
The Birdcage Tavern (C1) Handicap over 1150m sees a clash between Cabarrus and Easy Road, two lightly-raced horses with a big rap on them after impressive maiden wins.
The field also includes two other last-start winners, Little Raven and Schazem, and consistent performers Silent Bid and Gee Gee Redhead.
Cabarrus, a four-year-old syndicated by Star Thoroughbreds, won without being fully extended at his debut three weeks ago.
His career had been delayed by a pulled back muscle that managing owner Denise Martin said he sustained during a barrier trial late last year.
"The injury was quite severe and, on our vet's advice, we gave him plenty of time to recover and he didn't come back into work until late April," Martin explained.
Martin said the Squamosa gelding had previously shown a lot of promise on the training track and his owners were hoping he would now live up to that potential.
Easy Road, a year younger than Cabarrus, returned from a six-month break to score an equally impressive win a fortnight ago.
Although it wasn't a strong field, he was able to lead from a wide gate and withstand mid-race pressure before drawing clear to score by four lengths.
Trainer Adam Trinder said the Super Easy gelding was bred to stay and may be given a chance in the better three-year-old races later in the season.
"We'll just give him another run, possibly two, this preparation to see where he fits in," the trainer said.
As well as some promising horses, Sunday's race will feature a talented lineup of jockeys.
Former Devonport-based apprentice Raquel Clark, now the leading rider in South Australia, will be home on a quick visit and will ride Silent Bid for Team Wells.
And, Victorian-based Jason Maskiell will fly in to ride Little Raven who is owned and trained by members of his family.
Clark will be coming off an important assignment at Flemington on Saturday when she will ride Caulfield Guineas favourite Dalasan in the group 2 Danehill Stakes.
Maskiell has been in good form, riding a double for Peter Gelagotis and Wendy Kelly at Sale last Sunday.
TASSIE DOG CHASES MILLION DOLLARS
Tasmanian-owned and bred greyhound Jamella Jet is on his way to another Million Dollar Chase final.
He has advanced to the semi-finals at Wentworth Park on October 11 after qualifying through the Gosford series.
If he can make it through to the final a week later he will get his second crack at the world's richest greyhound prize.
As the name suggests, the Million Dollar Chase is worth $1 million to the winner.
Jamella Jet put up an amazing performance to run second in last year's final, earning connections $100,000.
He missed the start and settled a distant last before storming home to go down by only a length.
Jamella Jet is raced by long-time greyhound racing participant David Booth, of Launceston, and is trained in New South Wales by Andrew Crouch.
The son of Fernando Bale was bred by Karlene Cuthbertson of Nabowla.
Booth reared him from four months, broke him in and trained him for his early races in Tasmania before sending him to Sydney early last year.
His career prizemoney has since grown to $184,000 which puts him behind only Buckle Up Wes and Bell Haven on the list of Tasmania's highest stake-earners.
The tab.com.au all-in market on the Million Dollar Chase final has another NSW-trained greyhound, Feral Franky, as the $9 favourite.
Jamella Jet is on the fifth line of betting at $31. Last year's winner Mystic Riot is at $41.