Speed demons set to steal the show
SATURDAY'S Coastline BMW Open Handicap has the potential to upstage the day's feature, with four of the slickest speedsters in Queensland burning turf over the Caloundra 1000m.
The stakes-performed mares From Within and Tumbler take on speed demons Mr Marbellouz and Spurcraft, who have won a combined 12 races from 19 starts between them in restricted grade to date.
From Within graduated from a Class 3 Plate to Melbourne Listed winner last preparation, having won twice in fast time over the Caloundra 1000m before heading south.
Tumbler has not raced since two luckless runs over 1200m at Doomben during the winter, including the Group 3 Healy Stakes.
Spurcraft only narrowly missed a stakes win at Doomben in May (when gunned down by Saturday's rival Gracida), but won twice subsequent to that, before bombing the start first up at Ipswich and narrowly failing to run down Basara (another rival, in what is a deep race).
Mr Marbellouz is the new boy on the block in terms of Open company, but he has underlined his ability with a combined winning margin of 32.6 lengths in his six wins to date.
He was injured when last seen, but trainer Kevin Kemp gave him six months in a paddock and says the five-year-old is firing on all cylinders now.
"He strained a ligament in a suspensory. The vet's advice was to give him three to four months off and the owners said give him six, just to make sure he would fully recover," Kemp said.
"He's been back in work about three months and I'm really pleased with where he's at now.
"He's had a couple of 650m jumpouts and won them both. The first one he had a good blow and last time not so much. All the indicators are good."
While Kemp is happy with Mr Marbellouz's condition, he concedes taking on this field is new ground.
"This is the strongest field he has met," he said. "He's still eligible for one more Class 6, but there's not many of them around at the moment and he's ready to go now, so here we are."