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Ken Casellas | Photo: Hamilton Content Creators

Three-year-old Jumpingjackmac is the youngest and least experienced runner in the $30,000 Kersley Pace at Gloucester Park on Friday night, but he has the natural speed and strength to prove the master of his 11 rivals in the group 3 feature event.

Jumpingjackmac, prepared by Gary Hall snr, is awkwardly drawn at barrier No. 5, but reinsman Gary Hall jnr is not particularly concerned, saying: “I’ll work forward and will be happy with either spot, leading or in the breeze.”

Jumpingjackmac made a successful return to racing after a spell last Friday night when he scored a fighting victory by a half-head over Otis after racing without cover over the final 1300m. That was his eighth win from 11 starts.

“He has done well since last week’s win,” said Hall. “He seems bit silly and a bit dopey, but he is a very smart horse who takes everything in his stride.”

The Hall stable has a good second-string runner in the Kersley Pace in seven-year-old Alta Intrigue, who is favourably drawn at barrier two and will be driven by Callan Suvaljko. Alta Intrigue drops in class after finishing fifth behind Perfect Major in the group 2 Stratton Cup last Friday night. He finished strongly when a half-head second to Alta Engen the previous week.

Alta Engen, trained and driven by Aiden de Campo, is likely to be one of the hardest horses for Jumpingjackmac to beat on Friday night when he will start from the No. 6 barrier.

Alta Engen notched his twelfth win from 23 starts when he set the pace and won from Alta Intrigue the previous week.  He is one of six smart four-year-olds in the field, the others being Manning, Jaspervellabeach, Whatabro, Medieval Man and Typhoon Banner.

Jaspervellabeach is racing with great enthusiasm for owner-trainer Kristy Elson. He was seventh in the middle stages before sustaining a powerful three-wide burst to take the lead 250m from home and finishing second to the fast-finishing Mandy Joan last Friday night. He worked hard in the breeze before winning from Alta Rhett the previous Friday night.

Caris Hamilton-Smith’s talented six-year-old Rockaball, fresh from his powerful finishing burst to win the group 3 Warwick Pace a fortnight ago, fared poorly in the draw and will start out wide at barrier eight. However, he is capable of unwinding another surging late run.