Ken Casellas | Hamilton Content Creators
The all-conquering combination of trainer Nathan Turvey and driver Emily Suvaljko should be at the fore again at Gloucester Park on Friday night when Blue Blazer starts from the coveted No. 1 barrier in the 2130m Catalano Truck And Equipment Pace.
Blue Blazer, a New Zealand-bred six-year-old, has not been seen as the pacemaker in any of his 50 starts in Western Australia where he has been recognised as a strong finisher, and all his six victories in the State have been come-from-behind efforts.
However, there is a strong possibility that Blue Blazer will be seen in the role of pacemaker this week. The previous time he began from the No. 1 barrier was seven starts ago when he revealed good gate speed to lead in the early stages before taking the sit behind outstanding fast-class performer Vampiro in the group 2 Navy Cup in mid-September.
He did an excellent job to finish fourth behind the brilliant Magnificent Storm, and he beat home horses of the calibre of Vampiro, Thats Perfect and Galactic Star.
Blue Blazer will be having his first start for three weeks — since he started from barrier nine, raced four wide early and then enjoyed an ideal passage, one-out and one-back, after Whoswhointhezoo was forced to vacate that position when one of sulky tyres was punctured. Blue Blazer battled on doggedly to finish fourth behind stablemate and pacemaker Walsh.
Blue Blazer has a couple of smart beginners on his outside: Valbonne at barrier two and Whatabro at barrier No. 3.
Valbonne, who will be having his first start for Oldbury trainer Lisa Walton, will be driven by Maddison Brown. He has led and won five times (three times at Gloucester Park and twice at Northam).
Whatabro, to be driven by Michael Grantham for trainer Michael Brennan, has been unplaced at his past five starts, since leading and winning from Jaspervellabeach and Queen Shenandoah on October 15. That was his third all-the-way victory at Gloucester Park.
Other runners expected to be prominent include the Brennan-trained Lord Rosco (barrier eight) and Aiden de Campo’s bonny mare Mandy Joan, who should enjoy a good passage after starting from the inside of the back line. She drops appreciably in class and is capable of surprising.