Ken Casellas | Photo: Gloucester Park Harness Racing
Cool Water Paddy arrived in Western Australia from Tasmania less than three months ago and his strong work for Ravenswood trainer Nathan Turvey is an excellent indication that he should prove hard to beat at his WA debut when he contests the $20,250m The Naked Jule Pace over 2130m at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The New Zealand-bred six-year-old was an exciting performer in Tasmania where his 33 starts produced 15 wins and 12 placings. He also raced twice in Victoria in June last year when he recorded an encouraging third placing.
His most recent appearance was in a 1609m sprint in Hobart on February 27 when he began from barrier five on the back line and settled down in 11TH position before starting a fast move from the rear at the bell to race three wide for the entire final lap and finish a close second to Lockaway Kacie.
A week earlier Cool Water Paddy had a tough run in the breeze and fought on determinedly to finish a close third behind Offthetopofmyhead and Izaha.
Cool Water Paddy will be driven by Emily Suvaljko, who has been impressed with his natural speed in recent workouts.
“I have been driving him in trackwork, and he has been working really well,” she said. “In Tasmania he was a horse with a lot of high speed, so I will see what Nathan wants to do (regarding tactics). I drove him the other day and he felt nice and strong, and he’s ready to go.”
Cool Water Paddy will need to be close to his top if he is to succeed against strong opposition, headed by Markham Eyre, Master Publisher, Moonlite Drive, Sound Wave, Talks Up A Storm and The Code Breaker.
Markham Eyre, to be driven by Ryan Warwick for star trainers Greg and Skye Bond, has the ability to overcome his wide draw at barrier eight. He set the pace and won from the talented Ezana over 2185m at a 1.56.9 rate at Pinjarra on Wednesday of last week.
Considerable Interest will surround the first-up appearance of the smart New Zealand-bred five-year-old Master Publisher, who is trained by Gary Hall snr and will be driven by Gary Hall jnr from barrier three.
This will be Master Publisher’s first start for 15 months. He was unplaced at his three starts in New Zealand before his 20 starts in WA produced seven wins and two placings.
He contested a trial at Pinjarra a month ago when he started from barrier six, settled down in fifth position, started a three-wide move at the bell and raced without cover in the final circuit before fading to fourth, five lengths behind the pacemaker Watch Me React. He is sure to be improved by the outing.
The Ryan Bell-trained Sound Wave will have many admirers after drawing the prized No. 1 barrier. He will be handled by Kyle Symington and appeals as the likely early pacemaker. He followed a strong-finishing victory over 2100m at Bunbury two starts ago with a sound second to American Arma in the group 2 $50,000 APG Consolation for four-year-olds last Friday night.
Trainer Michael Young has engaged Maddison Brown to drive the in-form Moonlite Drive from barrier six. “He is some chance,” said Young. “He sat in the breeze and went good when second to Pradason over 2536m last week.”