LEADING local jumps trainer Simon Ryan hopes to saddle up runners in the seven jumps races that are programmed for this year's Warrnambool May Racing Carnival.
Ryan, a former talented jumps jockey, said his jumpers were making good headway in the lead up to the three-day carnival.
"Things in jumps racing can go wrong pretty quickly but at this stage, everything is going good as we look forward to the carnival," he said.
"We've got some tried and true performers like Police Camp and Dormello Mo but on the back of those two, we've got promising jumping types including Steam Roller, Hez A Wolf and Ormito plus another few new ones in the stable. It's an exciting time to be involved in jumps racing."
Meanwhile, Grandview Avenue, a last-start Warrnambool flat winner for Ryan, may be a Wangoom Handicap prospect in May for the popular trainer.
"I think we'll run Grandview Avenue at Werribee this Sunday," he said.
"He won well at Warrnambool last time and has a good record there. I think he would be a good light-weight chance in the Wangoom."
WARRNAMBOOL trained Guizot staked his claim for a start in the $5 million 2020 All Star-Mile at Caulfield on March 14, with a second placing in the Manifold Stakes at Flemington on Saturday.
Guizot is one of four locally trained horses entered for the All Star Mile. The others are Lindsey Smith's Scale Of Justice, Begood Toya Mother trained by Daniel Bowman and Harbour Views from the Matthew Williams stable.
Purcell said Guizot, who finished a length behind Amadeus in the Manifold, is an underrated galloper.
"It was a great run by Guizot in the Manifold," he said.
"He was unlucky over the concluding stages. I think with a bit of luck he may nearly have won. I would love to think he may get a start in the All-Star Mile but I think his best chance of gaining a run is to win either the Futurity Stakes or the Blamey Stakes, as the winners of those races are guaranteed a start in the All-Star Mile."
The powerful Ciaron Maher - David Eustace stable entered nine horses for the second running of the 1600 metre race. There were 95 entries when they closed - 26 Group 1 winners and 23 with more than $1 million in the bank have been entered for The 2020 All-Star Mile, Australia's only fan-voted race.
Each $500 nomination fee will be donated to The All-Star Mile's official charity, the Good Friday Appeal, which raises funds for the Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne.
The voting - which is open to New Zealand residents for the first time this year - starts on Thursday, January 16, when connections of the 95 contenders will make their pitch for votes in a bid to finish in the top 10.
Greg Carpenter, Racing Victoria's Executive General Manager - Racing, said there's great depth in the entries for this year's race.
"We're delighted with the strength and depth of the nominations for The 2020 All-Star Mile, with 49 different training operations from right across Australia and New Zealand targeting the world's richest mile race," Carpenter said.
"It's great to welcome back the original All-Star Mile winner, Tasmanian mare Mystic Journey, as she aims to defend her crown and we're equally pleased to see leading stables from all six states in Australia nominating some of the most exciting milers in the country."
Five wildcard runners will supplement the top 10 vote-getters to make up the field of 15.
WONDERFUL to see former Colac based apprentice jockey Ryan Maloney score the biggest race win of his career when he won on Alligator Blood in the Magic Millions 3YO Guineas at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Maloney moved from Victoria to Queensland 18 months ago and has enjoyed great success. He hopes Alligator Blood may give him his first group one success in the $1 million Australian Guineas to be run at Flemington on February 29.
TERANG born trainer John Sadler was a major player at the Magic Millions Yearling Sales on the Gold Coast last week.
Sadler purchased 10 yearlings at the four-day sale. Eight were for a long time overseas client. Sadler parted with $3.9 million for the yearlings.
"It was a big week. We've sent the 10 yearlings to be broken-in down at Pakenham. We were the losing bidder on a couple of other nice yearlings but we're very happy with the group we've came home with," he said.
Sadler trains 30 horses from his Caulfield stables.
REIGNING Warrnambool Brierly Steeplechase winner Bit Of A Lad is making good progress towards feature jumps races in 2020, according to his trainer Ciaron Maher.
The four-time Warrnambool Grand Annual Steeplechase winning trainer revealed Bit Of A Lad, Euroman, Kapour, Jamieson and Newbury trained by his brother Declan had schooled over hurdles at Ballarat last Thursday and will do the same on Tuesday.
"We're getting a few of our jumpers ready for the early races," Maher said.
"We're keeping our options open as to what races they will kick off in. Bit Of A Lad may run in the open hurdle at Warrnambool in March before switching back to steeplechase races.
"I suppose the Brierly is an obvious race for him again but before Warrnambool, we'll look at taking him over for the Oakbank Carnival over Easter."
WHO TO FOLLOW
EMBRACE ME: looked unlucky when she resumed in an 1100 metre race. The stewards' report from the meeting gives an insight into Embrace Me's performance. Passing the 200m, she shifted out to avoid the heels of Wagner, was then awkwardly placed on the heels of Sirius Suspect and had to be checked across that gelding's heels, then a short distance later was awkwardly placed on the heels of Blazejowski before then having to shift in to obtain clear running to the inside of that gelding.
THAT GIRL: unplaced favourite at Flemington. Punters have to forget the run as she had no luck. She's had three runs from a spell and is ready to win.