TRAINER Tim Martin is sending a handful of chances to Rosehill Gardens on Saturday and thinks his least experienced runner is his best bet.
The Hipster is second-up in a Benchmark 80 Handicap over 1200m and was impressive on return from a long break at Hawkesbury on November 15.
HOT TIPS: WEEKEND BEST BETS
ANALYSIS: KINGSTON TOWN CLASSIC
He was coming off a year-long absence from the races after winning on debut in December 2016 and showed he was back with a good effort behind the very impressive Marble.
Martin has put plenty of time into his promising four-year-old, who was off racetracks following a paddock accident, as he steps out for just the third time with Adam Hyeronimus on board.
“The Hipster has improved since that run so hopefully he can run well in a hard race on Saturday,” Martin said. “I’ve thrown him in at the deep end but I want to win a Saturday-class race with him over the summer.”
Martin conceded the horse was still immature and is a big, soft galloper, but is sure he’s got some quality about him and will progress nicely through the grades starting on Saturday.
He wants to test him.
“I did put him in this race for that reason, to see what he’s got, and I think he’ll be hard to beat,” Martin said.
“If he’s as good as I think he is he’ll be right in it. The horse that beat us last start is a very good horse and we’re in this with no weight.
“He’s my pick of the day.”
From barrier seven, Martin will instruct Hyeronimus to find cover rather than look for the lead like he’s done at his only two career runs.
“If he gets that we can see how good he is,” Martin said.
Hyeronimus, who has ridden The Hipster at his two starts, feels the horse is adaptable and described him as “pretty cool and easygoing”.
“I don’t think it matters where he races. It just depends on the tempo and keeping him in a comfortable rhythm,” he said.
“It was a great run last time because the Godolphin horse is pretty good. And he had such a long time off so it was pleasing to see him come back well.
“He’s got a good turn of foot but he’s also got a high cruising speed and a lovely action.”
Martin and Hyeronimus will combine in three more races including the National Jockeys Trust Handicap (2000m) with perennial placegetter Gambler’s Blues, who is coming off a second placing to Dagny over 1800m on November 25.
He’s had eight starts at his home track for six seconds but is yet to win.
“He’s well named, isn’t he? But he’s never been going better. He just always finds one that gets past him,” Martin said. “I think going up to 2000m will suit him and we’ll ride him a bit quieter this time.”
The difference between winning and another second could come down to the ride by Hyeronimus. He’s got to times the seven-year-old’s run to perfection.
“We’ll be trying to get to the front as late as possible. We can’t get there too early,” Martin said. “He half-waits. You can’t get in front on him too early. The other day he did that and thought it was all over after he hit the front and pulled up. The horse is right so let’s see if it’s his turn this weekend. He’ll sit midfield and hopefully the tempo is good.”
Hyeronimus said judging the race wasn’t too hard as long as he gets an even share of luck.
“I’ll let him keep building into it and hopefully I get the timing right and he hits the front in the last few strides,” he said.
Meanwhile, Martin said Pick Me Up has to improve off last Friday night’s third to Invincible Quest if he’s to win a Benchmark 89 over 1100m on Saturday.
“He had a good blow last week so I thought it would be good to back him up,” Martin said. “He’ll sit off them and drawing a bit wider will help him this time.”
King Darci is another Martin runner who is in the market in the last event of the day over 1500m.
“It looked like he raced flat last time but he too had a good healthy blow and pulled up well,” he said.