A storm is brewing
HUNG over from a heady Superstakes Day, punters face what appears to be a hair-ripping 10-race midweek card, but should get some reprieve in visible form through STORMING in the Cecil C Charlton Memorial feature at 1300 metres.
Claimed by Oneil Markland from Phillip Thompson, for $550,000, on October 7, STORMING returned 18 days later to stun everybody, her trainer included, by winning one of those $850,000-$750,000 claiming races, which pop up on race programmes every now and again - really $550,000 claimers mixed with average three-year-olds.
Anthony Nunes' ROYAL ASSAULT and Wayne DaCosta's LITTLE BIG HORN, two of the fancied runners in the seven-horse field, were left standing when STORMING blasted through at odds of 82-1, widest of all, leaving the furlong pole in the 1100-metre event.
After making his move on the inside leaving the three-pole and running miles wide into the lane with Obrien White, STORMING ran out an easy winner, posting 1:06.3 on what was clearly a fast track. However, the fact that she beat ROYAL ASSAULT and LITTLE BIG HORN, with not much stable confidence, showed how improved she had returned, after two-and-a-half weeks, under Markland's care.
STORMING faces an old rival in the Cecil Charlton, MR AMBASSADOR, formerly trained by Wayne DaCosta, who has been taking orders from Paul Charlton since claimed for $600,000 on August 1 when beaten by GOLDEN GLORY at 1300 metres.
MR AMBASSADOR has raced three times since, twice placing fifth among overnight allowance runners, which should make him a winner among claimers. However, he did race on an $850,000 tag between his overnight allowance runners on, guess what, a wet track, finishing ninth of 11 runners at 1400 metres.
Though STORMING lost that race by almost four lengths, it should be noted she was drawn at post-position one and had lost ground when crowded at the half-mile, which gave her no chance of getting back to a speedy MR AMBASSADOR on a fast track.
Breaking from the outside with possibly, a wet track in her favour, having beaten ROYAL ASSAULT on a similar surface, STORMING will be there to pounce should MR AMBASSADOR set a foot wrong from his inside draw.