Racing preview (August 4): Maskiell back in the saddle after long recovery

Updated: August 3, 2017

It looms as a hectic weekend of racing with big cards across both days. The industry also welcomes back former gun apprentice jockey Jason Maskiell, who’ll be taking five rides at Spreyton on Sunday. The 26-year-old will be making his first appearance since 2013 after serving an 18-month suspension and overcoming the drug issues for which he was outed; overall 2017-18 season record: (WIN-PLACE-UNPLACED): 5-0-5, +0.2 units


The return of former star apprentice Jason Maskiell after a three-and-a-half-year layoff has helped overcome a potential shortage of jockeys at Spreyton on Sunday. Maskiell hasn’t ridden in a race since November 6, 2013. He served a 12-month disqualification then needed time to get his life back in order. The leading apprentice in Melbourne in 2009-10 is now 26 years old and ready to resurrect his career. Maskiell was given the all-clear from stewards to resume riding trackwork two months ago, paving the way for him to renew his riding career in Tasmania at the start of the new racing season (more here).

• A crack at a record-equalling third Grand National Steeplechase win is on the horizon for 10-year-old Wells. But first the gelding will try to claim a breakthrough win in the Crisp Steeplechase at Ladbrokes Park Sandown on Sunday. The Kathryn Durden-trained Wells headlines nominations for the $125,000 Crisp Steeplechase (3900m), a traditional lead-up to the Grand National (4500m) which will be run at Ballarat two weeks later. Wells was scheduled to run in last year’s Crisp but was scratched after suffering a bout of colic on race morning. He went on to claim his second Grand National a couple of weeks later (more here).

• It’s a long way from Kembla Grange to Coffs Harbour but it was a worthwhile trip for trainer Paul Murray who quinellaed today’s Coffs Harbour Gold Cup. Darci’s Affair, starting from the outside barrier, was too strong down the straight to edge out stable mate Gold Horizon with Glitra finishing third ahead of the fast finishing local hope Youwaitandsee. Winning jockey Robert Thompson won his first Coffs Harbour Cup way back in 1983 on Justkez and had to wait until 2014 to register his second win in the race when he saluted aboard Southern Shimmer (more here).


Today’s racing: Warracknabeal (Vic – soft 7), Goulburn (NSW – heavy 10), Wyong (NSW – good 4), Ipswich (Qld – good 4), Carnarvon (WA – good). Harness racing: Maryborough (Vic), Tamworth (NSW), Melton (Vic), Young (NSW), Albion Park (Qld), Gloucester Park (WA), Globe Derby (SA). Greyhound racing: Healesville (Vic), Casino (NSW), Strathalbyn (SA), Bendigo (Vic), The Gardens (NSW), Ipswich (Qld), Warrnambool (Vic), Dubbo (NSW), Shepparton (Vic), Richmond (NSW), Mandurah (WA).


Confirmed betting (card finalised)

Warracknabeal R7 #4 The Narcissist (win)
Wyong R2 #4 Stone (win)
Goulburn R2 #3 Grey Storm (win)
Ipswich R7 #5 Temujins Moon (win)


Yesterday’s results (WIN-PLACE-UNPLACED): 2-0-2, +0.6 units

Coffs Harbour R7 #1 Pelethronius (win) LOSE (U/P)
Pakenham R5 #1 Eminent Son (win) LOSE (2nd)
Hawkesbury R4 #5 Phabeni (win) 1st ($2.20)
Rockhampton R5 #2 Embrace The Pain (win) 1st ($2.40)



• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to Sportsbet (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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