Boss gets Fist Of Fury in Newmarket
Jockey Glen Boss believes that being bottom weight will offset the inexperience of Sydney colt Fist Of Fury in the Newmarket Handicap at Flemington.
Trained by John O’Shea, the three-year-old has won two of his four starts and will carry only 50.5kg in the near-capacity Group One field of 23 down the straight six (1200m) on Saturday.
"I know he’s only lightly raced but he is really going to jump out of the ground with that weight," Boss said.
"He will let it rip and run really quick sectionals."
Fist Of Fury would be lightest-weighted Newmarket winner since Elounda Bay won for Bart Cummings with 49kg in 1981.
The straight holds no fears for the Hussonet colt who is by the same sire as last year’s winner Weekend Hussler and who last spring ran Northern Meteor to a half-length in the Group One Coolmore Stud Stakes (1200m) on Derby Day at Flemington.
Last start, ridden by Corey Brown, Fist Of Fury resumed in the Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield and despite a buffeting finished sixth just three lengths from the winner Swiss Ace.
"His Oakleigh Plate run was very good as he never got out of trouble," Boss said.
"He has done everything right since. He is flying."
Northern Meteor is the $7 favourite with TAB Sportsbet but he meets second favourite Fist Of Fury ($9) two kilos worse than in the Coolmore Stud Stakes.
With Fist Of Fury drawn in barrier seven, Boss said there was a lot of speed around him including Northern Meteor who is in gate 12.
He said Fist Of Fury may also have an edge having had a run this campaign whereas Northern Meteor was resuming down the testing straight.
However Boss stopped sort of comparing Fist Of Fury with former top three-year-old Fastnet Rock who he rode when second to champion filly Alinghi in the 2005 Newmarket.
"They are not similar but he (Fist Of Fury) is a beautiful colt, has a good temperament and he is proven down the straight," Boss said.
The Newmarket is recognised as Australia’s premier sprint and this year’s field in the biggest since a capacity field of 24 lined up in Gold Trump’s triumph in 1990.
Lee Freedman and David Hayes both described this year’s race as an "old fashioned" Newmarket when big fields were normal.
Freedman has $14 chance Time Thief who has drawn barrier 11 and will be ridden by Mark Pegus.
Red Element, who will be ridden by apprentice Dean Holland, is the most fancied of Hayes’ three runners at $35 and has drawn the outside in barrier 23.
Largo Lad has gate 16 and with Chris Symons as his rider is $41 while Stephen Baster will chase his third Newmarket win on stablemate Seventh Rock who is $101 and has barrier nine.
By Robert Windmill