• Racing Tips
    Youngster to strengthen reputation Youngster to strengthen reputation

    BACK IN TOWN: Ignatius looks a Saturday night special.

    RECENTLY touted as Australia’s best three-year-old, Ignatius has the opportunity to strengthen his reputation at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night. Unbeaten from seven... Youngster to strengthen reputation

    RECENTLY touted as Australia’s best three-year-old, Ignatius has the opportunity to strengthen his reputation at Tabcorp Park Menangle on Saturday night.

    Unbeaten from seven starts this term, Ignatius is engaged in a New South Wales Breeders’ Challenge semi-final for trainer James Rattray.

    The son of Roll With Joe hasn’t experienced defeat since capturing last season’s Alabar-sponsored semi, with his record sitting on 12 wins and a third from 13 starts.

    A brilliant winner of his heat at Penrith three weeks ago – which led to the ‘best’ chorus – Ignatius has improved since the outing according to Rattray.

    “What he did in his heat was really special, breaking the track record so effortlessly,” Rattray said. “There’s been a pretty big wrap put on him since.

    “He’s a lovely horse, but we’re not getting ahead of ourselves and will just keep taking one step at a time with him.

    “He has trained on well since Penrith and will be fitter again for the semi.”

    Drawn to lead throughout from barrier three, the gelding is a $1.10 favourite.

    “It’s a good draw, which we will be using,” Rattray said. “I’ll be pushing forward from there.”

    A short-priced favourite in the opening semi, Picard is the main danger in the series according Rattray.

    Also by Roll With Joe, Picard has won six of his last seven starts, with his defeat a valiant second behind Ignatius in their heat.

    Prepared by Kevin Pizzuto, the gelding is also predicted to lead throughout from the pole.

    “Picard has been pretty impressive and looks to have his semi sown up,” Rattray said. “I would have to say he is the main danger over all if they both make it through to the Final.”

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    Paul Courts

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