Waller's team ready to fire
Stradbroke Handicap placegetter Double Dare has bounced back from a lacklustre spring and hopes are high he can show his best in the Listed Razor Sharp Handicap at Randwick.
Double Dare had an interrupted run in the Group One Stradbroke (1400m) in June won by Mr Baritone to be beaten less than half a length.
He had one Sydney spring start in The Shorts at Randwick on October 4 where he finished out of the placings and again failed to come up to expectations in two starts in Melbourne.
Trainer Chris Waller brought him home and the gelding claimed a confidence-boosting win in a barrier trial last week.
With Waller having a few days off, foreman Paul Shailer says Double Dare seems to be his old self.
"His trial win was impressive without doing too much," Shailer said.
"He is a horse who has had a few wind issues during his career but he goes well fresh and although Melbourne was disappointing, he is coming along nicely since he’s been back home."
Double Dare was one of 20 nominations for the Razor Sharp which was won last year by international sprint star Takeover Target.
The Waller-trained Future’s Dream is only a 50-50 chance of running in the other feature on the program, the Group Two Villiers Stakes, but the stable will be well represented in the support races.
Shellscrape is set to run in the two-year-old handicap for colts and geldings after running second at his two starts so far, both times behind Phenomenal Lass.
"He has done very well and is pretty much bombproof," Shailer said.
There were just seven entries for the race with 17 nominations for the fillies division.
Waller will have three runners in the 1400m two-metropolitan-win race – the enigmatic Gently Bentley, improving four-year-old Rangirangdoo and English import Shadow Cabinet.
Rangirangdoo has had four starts and won his past two at Canterbury, the most recent on November 20.
"He had a foot abscess which was nothing serious but it means he hasn’t raced for a few weeks," Shailer said.
"He is very promising. Shadow Cabinet won a barrier trial in good fashion and Gently Bentley mixes it up but is doing well."
There were 123 entries for the meeting with the Group Two Villiers (1600m) receiving a healthy 21 nominations.
By Caryl Williamson