West On Augie leads a stellar trio of chances for the Chris Halse kennel in the heats of the Lew Dorsa Memorial (520m) at Cannington tomorrow night.
The son of Fernando Bale bounced back to his best form in Grade 5 class last week, where he recorded a 13.5 length win, following his fifth placing in the heats of the Sandi’s Me Mum a week earlier.
Halse said Sandi’s Me Mum Memorial winner Dandalup Brutus would once again prove to be a major test for West On Augie, but was confident he could overcome it.
“If he gets clear running he is going to be very hard to beat,” Halse told TABradio’s The Sports Daily.
“Dandalup Brutus likes to use a bit of the track early, that is probably the only downside.
“He probably needs to cross it early.”
West On Augie, who holds the track record over the 490m at Mandurah, has raced 14 times for nine wins, including six of his last seven starts.
Halse said he hoped an arduous first season of racing would not catch up with the chaser, and he could go on to contest some of the upcoming feature races.
“He is still really young,” Halse said.
“There’s the Puppy Classic, Mandurah Derby and WA Bred races along here for the next couple of months, then you have the Perth Cup carnival.
“He’s not a big dog, I just hope he can keep ticking along.”
Halse said he expected Skipper’s Ticket to find it difficult to beat Astrozone in the opening heat of the Lew Dorsa, while he felt Ramifications would also need luck to win the final of the three heats.
Meanwhile, Halse’s kennel star Quick Jagger takes on Robert Britton’s star pair Rippin’ Sam and Fanta Bale in the final of the Super Stayers (725m) at The Meadows tomorrow night, following an encouraging fourth placing behind Rippin’ Sam in the heat last week.
Quick Jagger is staying at Britton’s kennel this week, as he looks to record his second Group 1 win in Melbourne, following his win in the Sale Cup late last year.
Halse said he was confident Quick Jagger could mix it with Fanta Bale and Rippin’ Sam on his best form, but little setback have harmed his chances ahead of the Group 1 feature.
“We’ve had a bit of a chequered preparation getting towards the Australian Cup carnival,” he said.
“I spoke to Robert and he said he seems to be better this week than he was last week.
“If he can reproduce his Sale Cup run he will be right in the mix.”