A FAVOURABLE draw has trainer Laura Crossland quietly confident ahead of Saturday night’s South East Derby at Albion Park.
Crossland will contest the Egmont Park-sponsored feature with Lochinvar Art, which is considered the best chance of upsetting the juggernaut that is the Mark Purdon/Natalie Rasmussen stable.
The couple have two runners in the feature – Jesse Duke and Self Assured.
Self Assured is unbeaten from four starts, including his two outings around Albion Park.
Racing in his customary consistent fashion, Lochinvar Art has drawn barrier three but slots into two with the removal of the emergency.
As such the son of Modern Art has been installed a $1.85 favourite with TAB Fixed Odds.
“I’m very happy with his draw,” Crossland said. “It’s a draw we plan to make the most of.
“He went enormous last start when second in the Breeders’ Challenge Final at Menangle a couple of weeks ago…it was the best run of his career.
“He hasn’t taken any harm from the run either and has been training on well.”
Citing the Purdon/Rasmussen youngsters as the biggest threats, Crossland is also weary of local hope Trojan Banner.
Jesse Duke will come from barrier six, with Self Assured and Trojan Banner drawn alongside each other on the second row.
Prepared by Alistair Barnes, Trojan Banner is undefeated from seven Australian starts.
TAB Fixed Odds have Self Assured as the runner most likely to upset the hot shot at $2.40.
“Self Assured hasn’t drawn well, but he seems like a pretty nice type,” Crossland said. “Jesse Duke will also be hard to beat.
“Trojan Banner has won every start since he got here so has to be respected.”