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It's another packed day of racing across Australia on Saturday
  1. Horse Racing

Australian Racing: Ambassadors to deliver at Tuncurry

There are two meetings set to take place on Monday, with Tuncurry and Orange both due to hold meetings on good 4 surfaces.

Race 6 Tuncurry

Ambassadors @ 5.50

Race 8 Tuncurry

Hellfire Express @ 2.90

Race 4 Orange

Gutsy @ 2.70

Ambassadors to shine at Tuncurry

The sixth race on the Tuncurry card is an interesting Class 1 set weights contest set to take place over 1600m.

Jay Hopkins sends out Sonofdec here, with the gelding having made just two starts to date including when sixth in a 1200m maiden held on a good 4 track at Newcastle November 21st.

The three-year-old jumped at triple figure odds under Jean Van Overmeire that day, but showed enough when ridden from off the pace on that occasion to suggest he can be winning races.

The gelding took a step forward when racing from the rear of mid-division prior to delivering an impressive four-and-a-half-length success in a 1405m maiden held on a soft 6 track at Coffs Harbour.

That Coffs Harbour effort came at the end of last month, with the runner-up Quinky Deel going on to place second at Kembla Grange recently.

While open to improvement, he looks short in the market and it can pay to look to AMBASSADORS for a winner here.

While the four-year-old is without a win since saluting by three lengths over 1300m at Newcastle in March, it’s of note that he has recorded some solid efforts in defeat since.

The 5.50 pick was ordered to re-trial following a last of ten over 1400m at Kembla Grange in October and he recorded a win at Wyong when taking a 1200m barrier trial subsequently.

Apprentice jockey Benjamin Osmond takes over in the saddle here, with his mount having reared at the start prior to finishing last of six over 1400m at Newcastle last month.

Trainer Nathan Doyle boasts a 40% strike-rate (2/5) at this venue in the last 12 months and looks up to recording another victory.

Express on track for victory

The final race on the Tuncurry card is a 1400m Class 2 handicap event. 

Jockey Aaron Bullock has been in good form of late and his mount Due Diligence is expected to prove popular with punters following two solid efforts this time around.

The first of those saw the four-year-old record a half-length victory under Bullock in a 1200m Benchmark 58 handicap held on a good 4 surface at Beaumont.

The gelding had to be taken back from a wide barrier that day and he raced wide when beaten just over a length into fifth in a similar contest over 1410m on a soft 6 track at Grafton subsequently.

However, he meets an unexposed rival in HELLFIRE EXPRESS, who is expected to prove hard to beat under Heavelon Van Der Hoven.

Van Der Hoven was on board when the gelding battled to a head victory, having raced prominently in a 1410m Class 1 handicap on a heavy 9 track at Orange November 24th.

The 2.90 three-year-old has performed well on a sound surface in the past, including when fourth over 1150m in a Class 1 handicap at Beaumont when racing first up this spell.

Trained by Annabel Neasham, the gelding has a good barrier five from the rail and looks capable of saluting for the third time in five career starts.

Gutsy goes for a hat-trick

Jockey Clayton Gallagher has been in good form of late, with the hoop boasting a 36% strike-rate (14/39) in the last 30 days.

The rider gets the leg up on GUTSY in the fourth race on the Orange card, a 1010m Benchmark 58 handicap event.

The 2.70 pick has won each of his last two starts, with Gallagher up on each occasion, including when half-a-length winner of a similar race to this over track and trip on a heavy 9 track November 24th.

The seven-year-old will jump from next to the rail here and, with the quicker going expected to be no problem, he is taken to complete a hat-trick.

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