Jockey Steven Parnham is confident he can end the Ascot racing season on a high when he takes a quality book of rides on Saturday.
Fresh from riding War Saint to victory at Ascot yesterday, Parnham will now turn his attention to some in-form gallopers he rides on Saturday, headlined by Coming Around in the Australian Racing Hall Of Fame Handicap (1200m).
A winner at two of his five starts, Coming Around heads into Saturday’s event off the back of a sound trial behind Leading Girl at Belmont.
Trainer Raquel Williams gave the gelding a shot at blacktype racing earlier this year when he finished eighth to Creative Hero in the Challenge Stakes.
Parnham said he was excited to see how the son of Gingerbread Man returned to the track this weekend.
“I’ve been on him a couple of times and in a trial,” he told The Races WA.
“I’m impressed with the way he’s matured.
“The 1200 might be on the short side of what his best distance is, but I expect him to run a really good race.”
WA Guineas placegetter Flirtini, first-up on Saturday, heads up the TABtouch market for the three-year-old event at $2.25, ahead of fellow returning gallopers Black Sabbath and True Attraction ($4.40).
Coming Around ($8) is one of five runners in single figures for the race.
Parnham teams up with Geraldton galloper River Dance in the Group 3 Roma Cup (1200m), where he will take on star performers Rock Magic and Galaxy Star.
River Dance finished fourth to Rock Magic at his most recent outing in the Group 3 Northam Stakes (1100m).
The gelding has drawn barrier two for this weekend’s $150,000 event and Parnham said his mount deserved respect.
“Galaxy Star is a top liner and Rock Magic has been there a long time,” he said.
“Weight-For-Age does make it a little bit tougher, but his run the other day was terrific.
“He only went down a narrow margin to Rock Magic, so he’s not that far off them.
“With a good run, I expect him to be somewhere there.”
Parnham said he rated Hoboken, a last start winner, as his other key chance on the day in the Free Entry To Belmont Park Handicap (1100m).
“He’s done really well this preparation,” he said.
“There’s a few resuming in the race and it does look a little bit stronger, but you can’t knock his form and I hope he can do it.”
The Ascot meeting gets underway at 12.42pm, with the Roma Cup to jump at 4.20pm.