Gippsland’s biggest race

David Braithwaite

WET weather will hopefully clear for Sunday’s Sale Cup at Greenwattle Racecourse.

Overcast conditions are set to greet horses and racegoers, with a top temperature of 17 degrees forecast.

On Thursday morning, the Greenwattle track was rate a “good four”.

The Sale Cup is Gippsland’s premier horse race. The 1600 metre race is a listed event, a level before group status.

A prize pool of $200,000 is up for grabs, with the winner collecting $120,000.

Top weight Pounamu hasn’t raced since September last year, during which he moved to the Cranbourne stables of Michael Kent. A regular place-getter in Western Australia, the eight-year-old gelding has collected more than $1.5 million in prize money.

The Hayes-Dabernig team has Fastnet Tempest. The seven-year-old gelding finished seventh at Flemington over 1400m at the start of the month.

Rox The Castle, to be ridden by Luke Nolen for Mornington trainer Kerry Edwards, is coming off victory in listed company at Caulfield over 1400m.

Damien Oliver has been engaged to ride Pushin’ Shapes. The seven-year-old gelding is coming off two runs at Caulfield, including victory over 1700m.

Moe-based Allison Bennett has nominated Appmat, which had a win and a placing in Tasmania before an eighth placing on heaving going on Moe Cup day last week.

The day’s other major race will be a $100,000 heat of the Melbourne Cup Carnival Country Series.

The first two horses in the 1400m race will advance to the $500,000 final on Oaks Day at Flemington.

The series is exclusively for country Victoria trainers without a metropolitan base.

Away from the track, Fashions on the Field is always a highlight. This year, famed milliner Peter Jago, boutique owner Hilda Simons and model Eleanor Baillieu will judged the best dressed racegoers, while former Miss World Victoria Alex Hecker will host.

Entries for Fashions on the Field open after the first race at 12.30pm.

The junior boys’ and little miss categories will be held at 12.45pm, the junior girls 1.20pm after race two, the men’s heats and final from 1.55pm after race three, the women’s open and best hat heats from 2.30pm and finals from 3.05pm after race five.

Free bus services from Sale, Maffra, Stratford, Loch Sport and Traralgon will take punters to the track and return.

Sale Cup, race seven, 4.10pm, Sunday:

1. Pounamu (barrier 7, 59.5kg): trainer M. Kent.

2. Fastnet Tempest (barrier 5, 57.5kg): trainer D&B Hayes-T Dabernig.

3. Fox The Castle (barrier 6, 57.5kg): trainer K Edwards.

4. Pushin’ Shapes (barrier 9, 55kg): trainer D&B Pearce.

5. Romancer (barrier 1, 54kg): trainer G Begg.

6. Vassilator (barrier 4, 54kg): trainer C Little.

7. Gold Fields (barrier 8, 54kg): trainer L McGill.

8. Mandela Effect (barrier 2, 54kg): trainer S Brunton.

9. Mr Money Bags (barrier 10, 54kg): trainer R Griffiths.

10. Appmat (barrier 11, 54kg): trainer A Bennett.

11. Aree Al (barrier 3, 54kg): trainer R Laing.