Overseas raiders in Trials 'encouraging'
The Jockey Club's decision to open up the Cathay Pacific International Trials next month to foreign runners looks to have borne some unexpected fruit. Australian sprinter Scenic Blast arrived safely from Japan yesterday, where he was luckless in the Sprinters' Stakes, and his trainer Danny Morton is expected to take advantage of the new regime to run in the International Sprint Trial. But Bill Nader, executive director of racing, said yesterday interest in the Trials had been greater than anticipated even beyond Scenic Blast. 'For the first year we've done it, I didn't think we'd get too many and maybe in the end we won't, but at this stage there is a very real possibility of four to six visitors across the three Trial races and that is very encouraging,' he said. 'With the overseas entries closing for the international events last Friday, we have to sit down this week and get serious about which horses will be invited for the Trials because they must be horses we are definitely inviting for the main event in December, too, and travel needs to be organised.'