Does Fletch have what it takes this Saturday?
Unbeaten since arriving from New Zealand, Fletch Maguire faces his biggest test at Globe Derby Park on Saturday.
Trained by Aaron Bain, Fletch Maguire will come from gate three in the 1800-Got-Junk? Pace (1800m) and will be driven by Wayne Hill.
Bain currently holds a 12-win lead in the 2023 SA Trainer’s premiership and will be hoping Fletch Maguire can add to his winning tally of 54.
The four-year-old has had six starts for Bain since arriving last year and been super impressive winning in smart times each outing.
After four wins earlier this year he was given a break and resumed at Mildura on July 21 winning comfortably by five metres before lining up at Globe Derby Park on August 12 and scoring by 31 metres.
“There is no doubt this is his toughest test,” Bain said.
“I would have thought the majority of the starters were capable of winning, including his stablemate American Beauty.
“However, if he is step up to the campaign, we have planned he would need to win.”
Bain said Fletch Maguire was tentatively aimed towards a Ride High Vicbred Super Series heat over 2190 metres at Shepparton on Thursday, August 31.
“If he warrants a trip to Shepparton, he needs to win on Saturday against such good opposition.”
Bain said he expected Fletch Maguire to have to sit parked on Saturday.
“He has gate speed but not enough to lead,” Bain said.
“I would think Rakero Storm, from gate two, to find the front and hopefully Wayne can take the spot outside him, then be good enough to win.”
Bain said it would be unwise to discount American Beauty which has drawn gate six and which will be driven by concession reinswoman Bernadette Page.
“She will have to go back from the gate but if there is plenty of action up front, she will run home powerfully.”
American Beauty was good enough to beat stablemate Classy Dancer at her last run, and he was an easy winner on Monday.
Bain also has two runners in the Ryan Racing Pace (1800m).
Our American Maid will come from gate two with Gaita Pullicino to drive and Samantha Pascoe will be in the sulky of Take My Wallet which is out of the draw and has drawn barrier 11.
“Our American Maid had the trail on Big Black Betty in the heat and got outsprinted up the home straight,” Bain said.
“I can’t see her getting the same run this week so we will have a change of tactics and keep her in the running line which should make her more competitive.
“But I believe Take My Wallet is my best chance in the race, if she does everything right.
“She was not on her best behaviour in the heat galloping in the score up and giving away as big start.
“It was an excellent run to grab third, but she will need to be on her best behaviour to have a winning chance.
“I’m confident she will score up and prove a good chance.
“It is a good field and obviously Big Back Betty from gate one again will be hard to beat, and Nicely Spoken is a very talented three-year-old.”
Bain will also debut The Only Decision in the final event, the Bianco Reinforcing Pace (1800m).
Formerly trained by Emma Stewart, The Only Decision was a winner of Eric Reece Memorial Final (2190m) at Hobart two starts back before failing as an odds-on favourite at Charlton in April.
Transferred to the Bain stable, the four-year-old gelding trialled well at Gawler earlier this month rating 1:57.4 over 2090 metres winning by 25 metres.
The Only Decision has drawn barrier six in the field of seven and will be driven by Wayne Hill.
“He is a nice horse who trialled well,” Bain said.
“He runs into an in-form horse, Shazzam, who has been impressive winning his past two.
“I would think Shazzam would lead from his draw of three and we might have to sit parked, and the best horse can win.”
Photo Walter Bulyga