Graeme Murray out to fulfil dad's prophesy in Wagga Town Plate

Graeme Murray is confident Sure And Fast can return to the form he showed in winning the first Provincial Championships Final in 2015 when he returns from injury in the Wagga Town Plate on Thursday.

The six-year-old gelding was the Town Plate runner-up in 2016. He has had only two runs since and undergone a throat operation, but this was a race Murray's late father Bede thought was perfect for  him.

Back for revenge: Sure And Fast (inside) is pipped by Just A Blur in the Wagga Town Plate.

“He is back to his old self and his gallop at Kembla the other day where he broke 32 seconds for his last 600m says he is back to the horse that dad had when he won the Provincial Championships,” Murray said.

Graeme is the third member of the family to train Sure And Fast, which was under his brother Paul’s care when he was last ran at Wagga.

“It was always a carnival that we have targeted, and dad thought Sure And Fast would be a Town Plate horse, so it would be pretty special if could come back from a throat op and win it,” Murray said. "He is coming off nine months off but he is very fit."

Meanwhile, Clarence River Jockey Club chief executive Michael Beattie has targeted support races at July’s Grafton carnival as he attempts to make it a destination event for stables around the state.

The features Ramornie Handicap and Grafton Cup will stay at $160,000 each but all races on cup day will be for a minimum of $40,000.

The Grafton Guineas will get a big boost to $80,000, with the winner eligible for a $50,000 Inglis bonus if sold by the sale company.

The BIG Maiden will return to its place as the richest maiden in NSW outside the metropolitan area with $45,000 in prizemoney.

“What we are trying to do is make a destination for a number of horses. Stables can bring a team and target different races, and we are trying to fit in with races from Queensland,” Beattie said. “Horses that are not quite up to the Sunshine Coast Guineas and Queensland Guineas have the option of coming to Grafton.

“We are looking to continue to grow our carnival and make it the best country carnival in the state.”

Race diary: Monday: Grafton. Tuesday: Taree. Thursday: Wagga, Wyong. Friday: Muswellbrook, Wagga. Saturday: Binnaway, Boorowa, Lismore.

Source: Read Full Article