NSW: Few can match McCarthy

Champion reinsman Luke McCarthy has key drives at Tabcorp Park Menangle today.

Champion reinsman Luke McCarthy has key drives at Tabcorp Park Menangle today.

FEW horsemen can match the talents of premier Sydney reinsman Luke McCarthy.

With an incredible strike rate this season of winning one in every three drives and a placegetter two out of every three drives, it’s no wonder outside stables are queuing up to grab him whenever he’s available.

McCarthy will be the pilot on six likely favourites on today’s nine-race card at Tabcorp Park Menangle.

And his wife Belinda is keeping him focused on Sydney’s No 1 stable, by securing him for at least four of those favourites for the ‘Team McCarthy’ camp.

While they expect to dominate the six pacing races today, the three trotting races are much more open.

Hunter Valley trainer Stephen Kilroy has booked McCarthy to handle consistent mare Walkabout Sunrise ($4) in the opening race in the hope that she can improve on her first-up fourth to Lucky Charm at Penrith last week.

Walkabout Sunrise’s lone Menangle win was in a standing start race over 2300m a bit over two years ago with McCarthy in the sulky.

Joe and Mary Rando have also booked ‘Supermac’ for their trotting filly Illawong Moonbeam ($7.50) in Race 3 after she scored a first-up win for them at Menangle two weeks ago with, you guessed it, McCarthy taking the reins.

Belinda McCarthy then has the favourite in four of the next five races as Luke (53 wins) looks to extend his four-win lead in the state drivers’ premiership over the prolific Robbie Morris (49 wins).

He will partner Dream To Share ($2.25) in Race 4, Expensive Ego ($1.25) in Race 5, Ohoka Chopper ($1.50) in Race 7 and Stun Gun ($3.75) in Race 8 in what should be a bumper afternoon for the stable.

“Expensive Ego had a nice easy 10 days after his second in the Miracle Mile as we decided to focus on the APG with him,” said McCarthy.

“He’s really well and working well and we’re looking forward to having him back.

“He had a private trial last week to sharpen him up and he’s spot-on and ready to go.”

McCarthy also pointed out his stable star King Of Swing had a bit of time off but would be prepared for the Queensland Winter Carnival.

Another newcomer to the stable, Spirit Of St Louis has also joined the team from New Zealand.

“He has really good speed and we think we have a really good team for Qld and we’re looking forward to it,” he said.                      


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