Murphy armed and ready to fire again
By LAWRENCE WADEY
IT'S been a great end to a fabulous four years riding in the territory for Declan Murphy who is going out with all guns blazing.
No one is riding better than the accomplished Irish-American - a former Eclipse-award winning apprentice back in New York.
He has put in two of the best rides seen this campaign when scoring on Spiritual on the equitrack and forcing Better Choice home in the last couple of strides on Sunday.
Our Pal was another terrific ride at the weekend. Murphy jumped him from an outside barrier to the inside rail in a matter of a couple of hundred yards.
And then there was Heavily Armed who, despite being drawn widest of all and then missing the start to boot, was given a lovely, patient ride by Murphy to score at the first time of asking and land a considerable touch in the process a fortnight ago. Murphy was actually instrumental in purchasing the Irish import who is bred to get farther than the 1,200 metres over which he beat David Hill's promising Manor Lord.
Yesterday's work showed Heavily Armed had come out of his brilliant debut effort in fine style as went strongly to the line under Murphy in a most pleasing gallop which also served to confirm the impression that he will stay farther and be better for it.
He galloped relentlessly through his quarters and should at least get a mile. Next season he could well develop and win good races in Class One.
Murphy was also noted taking the bad-legged Golden Dragon through a smooth piece. The New Zealand import habitually runs well fresh and on this piece with stablemate Vital Point could well oblige when he reappears before the season closes.
He has also been noted trialling very well and should be plenty fit enough to do himself justice when next seen out.
In other work yesterday, Lawrie Fownes' Super Bingo II went sweetly in company with stablemate Music Magic. Super Bingo II holds an interesting engagement this Saturday, having been unlucky to run up against the rapidly improving Jollity last time out. The pair drew well clear of their rivals, which is always a sign of good form and Super Bingo II, who has thrived since moving to Fownes, appears primed to run another top race.
David Hill's Fat City is entered for the same contest. He worked very fluently round the inside track yesterday morning and looks to hold definite quinella claims in Super Bingo II's event for which Gary Ng Ting-keung's Maniwin and Wong Tang-ping's Star Of Marble have also been flying in the mornings.
These four could well dominate at the weekend and provide a useful quinella and tierce pay-out. Ivan Allan had a big team out on the track yesterday morning with his All Thrills working particularly well. The first-season import also went well last week.
Many Treasure appears to be going slightly better and can probably be forgiven his equitrack disappointment last time out. There was also good work on the grass from Allan's Wonderful World who looks ready to put his dismal International Cup effort behind him.
There were also two trials on the equitrack. The second saw a solid win from Derek Cruz's Silver Arrow though the best effort came from Patrick Biancone's King Prawn who went powerfully to the line after being kept on a tight rein in mid-division.
King Prawn has won over sprint distances but the way he shapes he could do even better when stepped up to 1,400 metres.
Gary Ng's Mannidear also went encouragingly in this heat but he could be the type who works well but fails to improve on his work in his races as he goes very hard within himself in the mornings.
The first heat degenerated from an eight into a five-runner affair but only two of them - Sea Of Jasper and Fit For Royalty - had any sort of hitout. John Moore's Fit For Royalty, a private purchase griffin, has improved in his work and looks the type who could improve next season though he isn't any superstar.