In A Step steps up in grade at Ballina but her trainer Brett Dodson isn’t worried about that at all. In fact, he’s only got good things to say about the four-year-old’s chances in a Benchmark 74 Handicap (1000m).
“It’s all positives for her and she’s going really well,” Dodson said.
“She drops in weight, which is the positive because she’s not a big filly, so the further she gets down in the weights the better she is.”
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In A Step will be ridden by Jon Grisedale out of barrier one and should be in the lead coming to the home turn.
“She’s got plenty of speed and has drawn the right gate and if they get a bit of the expected rain it won’t hurt her either,” Dodson said. “I think she’ll handle the step up in grade pretty well. Any run could be her last before a spell but while the races are there and she’s not showing that she’s had enough we’ll press on with her.”
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The Coffs Harbour trainer also runs Sawtell in a Benchmark 74 Handicap (1900m) on the day and he comes into the race fourth-up, which Dodson thinks is perfect timing.
“He won over 1900m last time and the jockey said that was as far as he wants but he’d had enough by then and was at the end of his preparation,” Dodson said.
“I wanted to get him to the trip earlier this time because he’s been able to relax in his runs lately and wants that ground. I just wanted to get him there at a good stage of his preparation and we’ve got the visors on so he can have a bit more of a look at what’s around him.”
He ran a closing fourth last start at Taree over 1600m and drops from 59kg to 54.5kg which gives him his chance.
“He’s building up to a win,” Dodson said. “Any time he gets up around 59kg he just doesn’t go as well. He runs out of his skin when he drops in weight.”
The Racing League’s inaugural season will see Billy Slater’s Queensland Rogues taking on Laurie Daley’s New South Wales Tycoons, Shane Crawford’s Vic Husslers and Brittany Taylor’s Black Hearts from Western Australia.
Originally published as Dodson a Step ahead of rivals in hunt for double