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Grills reloads Sniper for Coonamble after Highway pass

3 minute read

The stand-out bet at Sunday’s Coonamble Cannonball TAB meeting is away from the wide-open annual feature and in hot prospect Somerton Sniper for accomplished trainer Sue Grills.

SUE GRILLS. Picture: Racing and Sports

Like a flashing blue light for punters the Class 2 Somerton Sniper beat Group and Listed mare Opal Ridge in a Tamworth trial last month then won impressively off it at home.

He was set for a Royal Randwick Highway but Sue Grills elected to scratch because of a heavy track.

Opal Ridge, of course, then won the Listed Ortensia at Scone and while the Group mare was obviously hard held in the Tamworth trial, inexperienced Somerton Sniper was also unextended and is low level flying with 58kg for in-form Ashley Morgan into the Sipcam Australia DHA Welding Country Boosted Showcase Class 3, 1100m.

Coonamble at present is a soft 7 in overcast conditions.

Meanwhile for the near five-decade horsewoman, Somerton Sniper is two wins from just three starts. And following the trial, the 57.14 seconds winning a country Class 2, 1000m, off speed at Tamworth is exceptional for a restricted sprinter.

And a previous Armidale maiden win was just as strong and he has obvious upside into Sunday's Class 3.

"Happy with him, we've kept him up to the mark, he has raced in soft conditions but we may get an upgrade in clearing weather,'' Grills said.

"Drawn out (9) is a little bit tricky in a big field but I'll leave that to Ashley."

However, Sue put it in perspective with the family-owned Shooting To Win, four-year-old gelding.

"He's done all we've asked and has the makings of a good horse, early days though."

Meanwhile, the Nutrien AG Solutions Cannonball 1100m has typically drawn an explosive field of short course speedsters.

Mack Griffith's Compelling Truth is the sprinter to beat winning his past two 1000m races by an astonishing combined total of 11 plus lengths at long odds-on.

Racing and Sports

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