“I EXPECT him to win.”
That was the response from Gary Moore as one of the best maidens in the country, Mount Panorama, prepares to make his return at Newcastle today.
Mount Panorama was Group placed three times as a two-year-old and has shaped up to some of the better three-year-olds in the country this season.
But he is still yet to win a race in 11 starts and many punters have already lost patience with the talented gelding.
But Moore feels he has come back a stronger horse this campaign and expects Mount Panorama to be too classy for his rivals in today’s Maiden Plate (1300m).
“He trialled really well and Tim (Clark) was very pleased with him and said he felt great,” Moore said.
“The good thing about the trial was he jumped well and I’ve taken all the gear off him which will stand him in good stead.
“I expect him to win.”
Mount Panorama was stiff not to be in the finish of last spring’s Listed Gothic Stakes in Melbourne and Moore feels it’s not a case of the gelding not wanting to win.
“I don’t think that is the issue,” he said.
“He came from a very good stable (Team Hawkes) and he has just taken time to acclimatise to my stable.
“He definitely did run against some really nice horses and when I took him up to the Gold Coast (for the Magic Millions Maiden in January) he didn’t jump well and I just think he had enough.
“He has put on good body weight and he has worked well (leading up to today’s race).”
Moore is already heading north with Takedown this winter and feels Mount Panorama could be a genuine Queensland Guineas contender.
“He will head to Brisbane with the other horses heading up there,” he said. “He goes on soft ground as well if we happened to get that up there.”
Meanwhile, trainer Scott Singleton is upbeat Base Camp can break through for his first win in today’s Maiden Handicap (1300m).
“It looks a good race for him on paper,” Singleton said.
“He didn’t have a lot of luck the other day at Newcastle and I’m pretty confident he will take some beating (today).”
Singleton will also saddle up Art Of Defence in the Benchmark 65 Handicap (2300m).
“I think he is ticking over OK,” Singleton said.
“He didn’t show up at Hawkesbury the other day but he had to go back from the wide gate and they walked and sprinted home.
“With that run over 2000m under his belt, we will to get him a bit more forward into a position (today) and he is not without a hope.”
Base Camp and Mount Panorama look the best bets on the Newcastle card but Shaolin Kungfu (Race 6) and Sweet Chestnut (Race 7) can both improve at big odds.
Lord Kingsley (Race 8) is also set to have his admirers and you could make a case to say he should have won first-up when being blocked for a run at this track on March 29.
BRAD DAVIDSON’S NEWCASTLE BEST BETS
BEST BET: Base Camp (Race 3 No. 1)
Beat all bar subsequent stakes winner Whispered Secret two back and then had no luck at this track last start. This looks his race for the taking.
NEXT BEST: Mount Panorama (Race 4, No. 4)
He is the best horse in the race and his recent trial was nothing short of very impressive. He may be a non-winner but we will find out either way on the spacious Newcastle track.
BEST ROUGHIE: Shaolin Kungfu (Race 6, No. 9)
Just forget his run on the heavy last start where he clearly didn’t handle the track conditions. Before that he was beaten just two lengths behind Whispered Secret and he put in a really good effort at Canterbury over 1900m last prep. Over the odds.
WORTH A NIBBLE: Sweet Chestnut (Race 7, No. 6)
Medaille is the horse to beat but Sweet Chestnut is the value at $15 plus. She didn’t handle the heavy track first-up but her trial prior to that was super. She has ability.
BEST EXOTIC: Race 5
Quinella — 2,6.
JOCKEY TO FOLLOW: Brenton Avdulla has six good rides, including our best roughie Shaolin Kungfu. He could well leave Newcastle with multiple winners.
Originally published as Mount Panorama: ‘I expect him to win’
SOURCE: newsnow sport