Doyle holds the aces at Port Macquarie on Sunday

Punters pin-up Nathan Doyle is on target to repeat his Port Macquarie double from earlier this month when he heads back there on Sunday with two red-hot chances.

The Newcastle-based trainer has led in four winners from his last six starters including Prospero and Miss Scalini who are both in action on Sunday afternoon.

Former Tulloch Lodger Prospero has well and truly thrived since he made the move from Bowral Street winning his first race for Doyle at Port Macquarie on October 10.

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Jockey Dylan Gibbons gets a great chance to get in the winners’ circle on Miss Scalini.Source:Twitter

Prospero is a superbly bred gelding by Grand Slam winner Pierro out of Nova Star whose seven wins include the Group 1 BRC Winter Stakes (1400m) in Brisbane.

The five-year-old drew the outside barrier at his first visit to Port but that didn’t stop him from barnstorming his way down the crown of the track to win the 1800m Class 1.

On Sunday, Prospero steps up to 2000m in the John Oxley Class 1 & Maiden Plate over 2000m.

“It was a good win,’’ Doyle said.


“I thought he would be hitting the front and pulling up but he seems to be a better chaser and even home he seems to half baulk and not want to do things unless he has got a mate to follow out or chase around.

“So I just asked Ash (Morgan) to ride him dead quiet, from that alley we wanted to be back in the last few, and he actually showed a turn of foot for once with something to chase.

“We will be riding him the same way on Sunday, just come out and let him get into a rhythm and I think he will eat up the 2000m that’s for sure and he will probably get beyond that,’’ says Doyle.

Miss Scalini, meanwhile, is another Doyle recruit having formerly been trained by the Hayes/Dabernig partnership in Victoria.

The mare has considerable residual value once her racing days are over given her esteemed pedigree.

Not only is she by Black Caviar’s close relation, Magnus, her fourth dam is Research who won the ATC Derby and Oaks in 1989 for trainer Clarry Conners.

Miss Scalini has won twice in only four runs for Doyle including a brave on-pace victory at Gunnedah on October 12.

“I thought at the 200m that we might be in a bit of trouble but she was strong on the line again late and was probably drawing away,’’ Doyle said.

Dylan (Gibbons) knows her, he does a bit of work on her at home, and he’s back on board and with his claim, we get in well at the weights again with only 55.5kg.

“She will roll across and find the fence and if she can get a couple of cheap sectionals somewhere mid-race I am sure she will give a good kick.

“There is a bit of rain about though and all her best runs have been on the top of the ground.

“We just have to watch the weather and see if we go around.’’

Terry Evans has his eyes on a big prize with Up The Stairs.Source:News Corp Australia

Up The Stairs climbing to the top

Sale-topping yearling Up The Stairs is on target for a return trip to Sydney on November 7 for the rich ATC Country Classic (2000m) but not before he contests Sunday’s Stephen Cook Memorial Handicap (1500m) at Port Macquarie.

Up The Stairs was the talk of Tasmania when he stepped into the ring at the Magic Millions Yearling Sale at Launceston in 2015 making top price of $100,000.

The reason why he was so sought after is that he is a three-quarter-brother to the former Apple Isle hero, The Cleaner who ran in two of Winx’s four Cox Plate wins.

Up The Stairs had his first 21 starts in Victoria when managed by VRC Oaks winning trainer John McArdle.

His last 11 outings have been under the care of Tuncurry trainer Terry Evans posting a win and four placings.

“We didn’t pay much for him and he had a lot of issues when we got him so he has done pretty well when you consider we paid $5000 for him,’’ Evans said.

Up The Stairs ran a huge race first-up at Taree over an unsuitably short 1250m prompting Evans to have a crack at a 1600m TAB Highway at Randwick on October 10.

While the grandson of Sadler’s Wells only beat two home, he was eating up the ground late to get within a diminishing 5.5-lengths of the winner.

“It wasn’t where we wanted to be,’’ Evans said.

“The winner was alongside us back on the fence and we ended up going ten wide and the winner went up the rail and won.’’

Up The Stairs has raced over the same course and distance as Sunday’s mission three times, returning to Tuncurry with a second and two thirds.

Joining him on the float on Sunday is Bouquets who could easily sprint well fresh when she resumes in the Carlton Dry Maiden over 1100m.

“I think she should go pretty good, I am quite happy with her,’’ the trainer says.

“She is not an overly big filly but she can go all right. She has been a bit of a handful; she is by Cluster and they tend to be a bit cantankerous.’’

Originally published asPort Macquarie preview: Doyle aims for another double

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