If local trainer Kerry Parker can win this Saturday’s $1 million The Gong (1600m) at Kembla Grange he’ll be talking about it for many years to come.
Parker has his best horse, Think It Over, trying to win the club’s biggest race, which is in its second edition.
“It would be a huge thrill to be able to win The Gong, especially with it being so early on in the race’s history. All the locals want to win it,” Parker said.
“To say what it means, I’d be going on forever and I could always say I’ve won the biggest race on my home track.”
Think It Over won the Group 3 Craven Plate (2000m) two runs ago before a disappointing 11th on a Heavy 9 in the Rosehill Gold Cup.
Things set up much better for him this weekend.
“The direr track will help and I’m absolutely rapt so have drawn a gate (3). The last thing I wanted him to be doing is working early on in the race,” Parker said.
“From barrier three he can sit in just behind the pace and he’ll be there if he’s good enough.”
Kembla Grange trainer Kerry Parker.Source:News Limited
Going from 2000m back to 1600m is a proven formula most trainers are happy to use, particularly Hall of Famer Chris Waller.
But Think It Over has had three of them instead of the usual one before coming back in trip. Parker still think it will suit him.
“I think it will, especially off a three-week break. He had five days in the paddock straight after that last run and we’ve had a good, uninterrupted two weeks leading into this and he looks terrific,” Parker said.
“There’s no dramas with him and luck in running will make the difference. He does have a bit of a flat spot and I think a nice strong rider like rider like Brenton will help him and pick him back up.”
Purple Sector and Rock were challenging for favouritism for million dollar race.
“A lot of the best horses get bashed up over the carnival so it’s good to aim for this at the end of it but there’s horses like Cascadian in it and he ran very well last start in Melbourne,” Parker said.
“Mister Sea Wolf won the race last year. I know he’s got a lot of weight though and this won’t be an easy race to win.”
Originally published asParker chasing home track riches in Gong
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