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Australian Racing: Sir Kerm the one to beat

Race 5 Newcastle

Sir Kerm @ 17/5

Race 1 Goulburn

Battle Abbey @ 4/1

Race 6 Echuca

Salute To The Sun @ 19/5

With Queanbeyan called off there are just the three meetings taking place headlined by a provincial fixture at Newcastle.

Kerm to stay unbeaten

The fifth race at Newcastle, a 1300m Class 1 handicap is an interesting affair with a field 12 set to go to post on a heavy 9 surface.

Mediaro showed plenty of ability last spell including when winning by half-a-length in a Canberra maiden over 1400m on a soft 5 track in early February on his second start.

Contested much stronger races than this on two of his three subsequent starts including when upped to 2400m to finish five lengths fifth in the Elvis Thurgood Galilee Final on a good 4 track at Caulfield in April.

Gets a drop to provincial level here and rates a worthy favourite with Jay Ford, on board for that Canberra success back in the saddle.

Sir Kerm is preferred here however with the four-year-old having shown up well in barrier trials under his rider here Andrew Adkins prior to making a winning debut in a 13 runner 1200m maiden contest on a heavy 9 track at Newcastle last month.

Shaped like he could be a useful performer on that occasion and with trainer Jason Deamer having his string in good form at present his representative is taken to maintain his unbeaten record.

Abbey to take Goulburn opener

Harderthantherest is expected to prove popular with punters ahead of the opener at Goulburn, a 1000m Class 1 handicap.

With a heavy 10 track forecast Keith Dryden’s charge’s ability to handle wet conditions, as proven when runner-up over 1100m on a heavy 8 surface at Cootamundra just under a year ago are a positive here.

However the daughter of All Too Hard has failed to score in three first up attempts including when a well beaten eighth having jumped at big odds for a 1000m maiden at Canberra last spell and with that in mind the four-year-old looks opposable here.

There looks to be plenty of pace drawn high and with that in mind the lightly-raced Battle Abbey is taken to deliver a victory racing from off the pace.

Down the field when making his debut over this course and distance on a soft 7 track in a maiden contest here in May the selection showed a marked improvement in form when scoring over the same trip at Gundagai a month later.

The three-year-old showed that handled wet surfaces on that occasion and while fitness has to be taken on trust the Hallowed Crown colt is taken to get the better of his older rivals with Robyn Freeman up.

Sun to score at Echuca

Top weight Video looks likely to jump as favourite ahead of the sixth race on the Echuca card, a Benchmark 58 event over 1400m.

The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained gelding has shown good form this spell including when beaten less than two lengths in finishing fifth in a Benchmark 64 event on the synthetic surface at Ballarat last month.

Unproven on the forecast soft 6 surface however and may find the concession of weight to Salute To The Sun too much.

Alana Kelly’s mount delivered a close up second in a Benchmark 64 event over 1300m on a heavy 9 track at Bendigo first up and while she could finish only fifth in a seven runner field over the same track and trip subsequently the form of that event is working out well with the winner and the third both winning subsequently.

The drop in grade is a positive for Shane Fliedner’s charge as is a rail draw and the five-year-old is selected to register a third career success.

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