Ayres Set For Two-Pronged Country Classic Assault

GLASSHOUSE Mountains is a long, long way from The Gardens and Temora, but Queenslander Rob Ayres is on his way south.

David Brasch

3 March 2022

GLASSHOUSE Mountains is a long, long way from The Gardens and Temora, but Queenslander Rob Ayres is on his way south.

Ayres’ classy gallopers I’m Explosive and Lucky Lance will contest the heats of the Stockman & Paddock Country Classic at those tracks on Friday and Sunday respectively.

But Ayres problem is actually getting from the Glasshouse Mountains, north of Brisbane, to both Newcastle and Temora.


“I’m checking it all out right now,” he said. “It looks like I will have to go down the New England Highway and into Newcastle that way. I will stay with friends at Belmont in Newcastle.”

Ayres is, however, supremely confident of making the semi-finals with both dogs.

“I’m Explosive has drawn the eight in her heat at The Gardens (on Friday) and she is really well suited.”

Of Lucky Lance, he comes into the race drawn the rails off a fast win at Bundaberg at his latest outing, but meets Victorian stars like Aston Ulysses and Immunity.

“I’m confident both of them will race really well and get through to the next round, the semi-finals at Dubbo,” said Rob.

On his way to Temora he is planning a stop at Gunning, near Goulburn, to visit the property of Andy and Jodie Lord.

“I bought Lucky Lance for $15,000 from Andy and he’s won $72,000 for me,” said Rob.

“I have heard the Lord property is wonderful, state of the art and I want to have a look.”


VICTORIAN trainer Mark Delbridge has taken the advice of Brett Bravo and decided not to trial his star galloper Jarick Bale prior to running in the Dubbo heats of the Country Classic over 605m on Friday.

The Dubbo heat has attracted a high class field which includes Billy Creek, McCooley’s Lad and Super Estrella.

“So what’s new,” said Mark of the tough field facing Jarick Bale. “He runs into top class fields every time he races.”

Delbridge asked Brett Bravo if he needed to trial Jarick Bale at Dubbo before the heat.


“I could have gone up with him a couple of weeks ago but Brett said it is a track good dogs don’t need to look at first,” he said.

And Mark also explained that Jarick Bale is a poor trial dog anyway.

“He went 34.02 to win the Group 1 Rookie Rebel on February 12, then I had to trial him in between his next race. He went 34.60 around The Meadows, but at his next race there, he won in 34.10,” said Mark.

“He’s a race dog first and foremost.”

Delbridge was headed to the Wheeler complex near Young to stay overnight before heading to Dubbo.

“All he needs to do is run in the first four to get to the next round,” said Mark.