Two stablemates preparing for their second-up runs at today’s feature Grafton meeting can send a timely reminder of the often under-rated ability of their home Kempsey stable.
Improving four-year-old gelding First Time Lucky looks a serious chance at good odds in a wide open class 1 for Kempsey’s leading trainer Barry Ratcliff before the stable saddles up progressive four-year-old sprinting mare Campari Soda in a benchmark 58 over 1106m to close the eight-race card.
First Time Luckydisappointed punters first up on this track when backed from $4.40 into $3.60, but he improves into his second-up run, and back in the autumn he ran the smart Charmed Princess to a nose over this same trip.
Similarly in a wide open race with many chances, big-priced Campari Soda, US-bred and part-owned by Ratcliff, has to overcome a wide gate and plenty of early speed underneath her. But after a nice return on this track when beaten under a length, she too is a “peak” performer second-up, especially dropping 2kg in weight.