Home targets for Nelson quintet

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  • June 07, 2023
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Hastings trainer Paul Nelson is looking forward to heading to his home meeting on Monday where he will line-up a handful of runners, including his star jumper The Cossack.

The Champion Jumper will return to the flat in The TLJ Handicap (2200m) to keep him up to the mark following his win in the Ken & Roger Browne Memorial (3900m) at Te Rapa last month.

Nelson, who trains the gelding in partnership with Corinna McDougal, has eyed the Signature Homes Waikato Steeplechase (3900m) at Te Rapa next week as his next major assignment and he believes Monday’s hit-out will top The Cossack off nicely for the Waikato feature.

“All going well he will head to the Waikato Steeples,” Nelson said.

“By the time he got to Waikato it would have been six or seven weeks since he last ran, so it will be good to give him a run on Monday.”

After dominating the New Zealand jumping scene last year, The Cossack was given his opportunity to tackle some Australian targets and came within a whisker of taking out the Grand National Steeplechase (4500m) at Ballarat last August.

Nelson hasn’t ruled out a return trip, but he said there are plenty of feature races in his homeland to keep him occupied this year.

“We will just take him one race at a time. It (Australia trip) was pretty taxing on him and there is good money here,” he said.

Earlier on the card, Nelson will line-up The Anarchist and Shackeltons Edge in the Mike King – I Am Hope Steeplechase (4000m), with the latter on target for the Hawke’s Bay Steeplechase (4800m) next month.

“The Anarchist will probably need it and Shackeltons Edge has had one or two jumping trials,” Nelson said.

“It was a bit of a pity that he missed a flat race, but we have used the jumpouts and they are pretty useful.

“Hopefully we will have him right for the Hawke’s Bay Steeples.”

Rounding out Nelson’s quintet of runners will be Motivation in the Farewell Gayle Richardson Hurdle (2500m) and Raucous in the Valley D Vine Restaurant Hurdle (2500m).

“Motivation was disappointing at Hawera. I am not too sure what happened, but the better track will suit him down to the ground,” Nelson said.

“And Raucous always tries pretty hard.”

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