Trainer Darren Bell has decided against using an apprentice on veteran galloper Eight’s A Party despite admitting he is perplexed about the gelding getting top weight at Doomben.
Eight’s A Party will line up with senior rider Brad Stewart in the Jockeys Celebration Open Handicap (1615m) at Doomben.
Bell has carefully guided Eight’s A Party’s career which has netted eight wins from 28 starts for the now eight-year-old.
“I once thought he would make a Group horse and he has been in some top races. But his recent form hasn’t been that great,” Bell said.
Eight’s A Party will carry 59kg which Bell found a little confusing.
“He carried 58.5kg first up in a benchmark race so I expected to get weight relief in an open not go up in weights,” Bell said.
“I realise the weights have been scaled up but he has won one race at the Sunshine Coast on a Sunday in the past 18 months.”
Despite that Bell elected to go with Stewart rather than claim.
“At his age he needs a senior jockey. I don’t think he likes chasing any more and I decided to run him when he drew in the middle of the field at barrier six,” Bell said.
“It means he should get in among the other horses and go with them. Brad should be able to get him to go along.”