Jockey Keagan Latham aims for winning treble at Canterbury Park


Key Largo has started to put it all together as a racehorse and that’s helped him get back to city racing, according to trainer Bryce Heys.

The I Am Invincible four-year-old hasn’t been to town since running down the track behind the top horse, Tailleur, last July.

He was spelled after that and returned late last year and has been taken through the grades at the provincials with success.

A win at Gosford and another last start at Canberra has helped book his ticket back to town and he runs as a fancied runner in the third race at Canterbury on Friday night.

Jockey Keagan Latham has been on Key Largo at his past two wins and has felt the progression he’s made ahead of his 11th career start this evening.

“He was quite troublesome early on in his career and used to race a bit erratically. Bryce has done a good job of trying to calm him down and get him to settle in his races,” Latham said.

“He’s turned out to be quite a nice animal now and he’s going for a hat-trick, so his confidence couldn’t be better.

“When he won at Gosford, he settled much nicer and he’s learning a lot about his racing pattern and the 1100m won’t be a problem with him and I think he’ll get out to 1300m eventually.”

Latham welcomed the wet track for Key Largo and he’ll jump from barrier one and likely let the speed cross him and sit in the box seat.

“He doesn’t mind a bit of juice in the ground and with that nice drawn hopefully we’ll get a gun run in behind the leaders and he can do the job again,” Latham said.

“Canterbury favoured the leaders but it’s definitely become a fairer track considering how small it is in circumference.

“We’ll be in behind the leaders and he’s got a good turn of speed so the faster they go the better it will be for him.”

Latham rides Vega Prince in the first and he hasn’t sat on his back before, but he does know a lot more about Rock The Bells who lines up in the fifth event.

They combined last start to run fourth at Newcastle, which was a little disappointing, but he wasn’t far off the winner.

“I thought he was a good chance of winning that day but he hit a patch at the 350m and it took him out of his rhythm. He’s one of those horses that really needs to be in his rhythm to hit the line strongly,” Latham said.

“He’s stepping up now but he is a horse that has ability.

“He won early on when he was a colt but now that he’s gelded, he’s matured nicely and hopefully he can show a good account of himself.”

Latham has no worries about the three-year-old’s ability to go from a fourth placing in lesser grade to a win in the city.

“I think the Canterbury races aren’t as strong as the city Wednesday meetings,” he said.

“Horses like these two (Key Largo and Rock The Bells) have every chance. Rock The Bells isn’t too far away from the stablemate Harmonium in terms of ability and it’s nearly the favourite.”

Why Quirindi Cup is important for in-form miler

If Brother Bassy can run a big race in Friday $50,000 Quirindi Cup (1600m), he can take himself and his trainer, Cameron Crockett, to the Country Championships.

The Benfica four-year-old comes into the main race off a dominant win over a mile at Tamworth and before that he went close to winning at Muswellbrook.

Crockett knows he’s got Brother Bassy in a purple patch now and it’s come at the right time with Scone’s $150,000 Country Championships Qualifier around the corner.

“He’s run a record over a mile at Tamworth last time but everyone sort of discounts him. That horse has got a fair bit of ability though,” Crockett said.

“He’s a 66 rater at the moment so if he can earn another point or two from the Quirindi Cup he’ll be there (Country Championships).”

Crockett’s got another top winning chance going around in the fifth race with Black Sunrise.

He comes into the Benchmark 58 Handicap (1450m) off two third placings over 1300m where he’s hit the line well so Friday’s extra trip naturally helps.

“I think he’ll win,” Crockett said.

“He’s been hitting the line well – and he gets Sam Clenton back on – and she’s very strong in the finish.

“I think he really needs to be told what to do in that last 100m.

“He’s just had to do a little too much in his first two runs. He just got too far back at Dubbo and had to make up too much ground, and Gunnedah isn’t the best track for horses that race like him.”

Black Sunrise ended his previous preparation with 10th and ninth place finishes but Crockett said those results were well and truly behind him.

“He had a wind operation. He was gone in the wind so they got the operation done and it’s definitely worked,” he said.

“He’s third-up now and ready to go.”



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