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Australian Racing: Kiss to blow away Taree rivals

There are three meetings scheduled to take place on Monday, with Taree, Mornington and Mackay all set to stage racing action.

Race 8 Taree

Cupid's Kiss @ 6.50

Race 5 Mornington

Team Captain @ 4.80

Race 5 Mackay

So You Battle @ 4.40

Kiss to complete Taree double

The penultimate race on Taree’s nine-race card is a competitive looking 1000m Benchmark 58 handicap expected to take place on a heavy 10 track.

Where’s The Fire has shown solid form in testing conditions in the past and was a winner on a heavy 8 surface at this distance last month.

The four-year-old came from off the pace that day and registered his best effort in three subsequent starts when half-a-length third in a similar race to this over track and trip a week ago.

Tony Ball’s gelding has a slightly worse draw here however and, while he is expected to prove popular with punters, he looks opposable in this contest.

CUPID'S KISS was the winner of last week’s course and distance contest and she is taken to complete a double.

The 6.50 mare had previously registered a five-and-a-half-length sixth when contesting a Benchmark 58 handicap over 1000m at Tamworth 10 days earlier.

The return to a wet track suited last time out, with the five-year-old recording her second win on a wet track this prep having saluted at Coonabarabran last month.

While Jeremy Sylvester’s mare has been ridden with restraint in her two most recent starts, she has gone well when ridden closer to the speed with Cobi Vitler again set to ride.

Captain to score for Cumani

The stayers are in action in the fifth race at Mornington with a field of nine set to do battle over 3080m in a Benchmark 70 handicap.

Castel Trosino broke his maiden by a narrow margin when successful over 2400m at Geelong in July last year and he has been racing over shorter distances in the main this prep.

The best of his efforts this time around saw the gelding beaten just under three-and-a-half-lengths in an 1800m Benchmark 64 handicap on the Hillside track at Sandown first up.

The Mick Price & Michael Kent-trained five-year-old is unproven over this distance and the veteran TEAM CAPTAIN is preferred here.

The eight-year-old is set to carry top weight here, having registered a good fourth place finish when beaten three-and-a-half-lengths over 3000m on his penultimate start.

The 4.80 gelding raced on the Lakeside course at Sandown when contesting a Benchmark 78 handicap at the start of last month that day and he drops in grade here.

Matthew Cumani’s representative found racing at metro level in a 2500m Benchmark 84 handicap at Flemington too much later that month and he has been freshened since that effort.

While you have to go back to November 2021 to find the gelding’s most recent success, he has been racing in much stronger races than this in the main since and looks up to returning to winning ways.

Battle ready for Mackay victory

Mackay’s fifth race in a 1560m Class 3 handicap, with SO YOU BATTLE set to jump from barrier four.

The filly finished down the field in the Magic Millions Whitsunday Guineas over this course and distance in July last year and has made just three starts since.

Two of those starts have come this prep, with both of those efforts coming at Rockhampton.

While the 4.40 filly could finish only eighth in the first of those races, it’s of note that she raced over 1050m in a Benchmark 65 handicap that day.

The daughter of So You Think again raced in a Benchmark 65 handicap when sixth in a 1200m handicap on a good 4 track at the same venue just under two weeks ago.

Apprentice McKenzie Apel has made a highly promising start to her career and a win on board the selection can help her improve on her 33% strike-rate (8/24) for the Ricky Vale stable.

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