In a Rosehill race where every runner is a first starter, trial form and early betting moves suggest Windjammer and Charlie Boy will fight out the finish.
Gai Waterhouse’s stable representative Mark Newnham can see why.
“I would agree with that, on trial form they look similar style of horses,” Newnham said.
“But I wouldn’t swap Windjammer.”
The Waterhouse-trained Windjammer has been an easing favourite to $2.10 after opening odds-on in the ATC Membership On Sale Now Handicap on Saturday, with the Gerald Ryan-trained Charlie Boy closing in on favouritism.
Both juveniles were recent barrier trial winners by solid margins and are the only runners under double figure odds in the 1100m race.
Waterhouse has already produced some promising two-year-olds, including Whittington and War who ran the quinella in the Listed Breeders’ Plate last month.
Newnham believes Windjammer stacks up with his stablemates.
“I think he’s showing as much as each two-year-old we’ve raced so far this season, and we’ve had a couple of nice ones,” Newnham said.
“He’s a really nice horse, his trial was very good and he had a gallop on the course proper at Randwick on Tuesday and he worked very well. I expect him to run up to his trial and work tomorrow.”
Windjammer will be on a prizemoney-building mission with an eye to the autumn carnival where stake money is crucial in qualifying for feature races.
Newnham labelled the son of Bernardini a “strong, no-nonsense two-year-old with a good attitude” and believes the colt is not a one-dimensional speed horse.
He won his 800m Warwick Farm trial on October 26 by 3-1/2 lengths.
“He seems to have the brain of an older horse,” Newnham said.
“In his trial he railed up well, he was held up and then let down strongly.
“Quite often two-year-olds win just through their speed but he seems to be able to settle and have a turn of foot. There might be a bit of scope there.”
Charlie Boy, who has firmed from $2.40 to $2.10 with TAB fixed odds, has been to the trials twice with his most recent an impressive 3-1/2 length victory over 900m at Rosehill.
Three of the youngsters he beat in the trial will be in the race on Saturday.