Ohoka Texas to test cup rivals

JAMIE SEARLE
Last updated 05:00 26/01/2013
Mark Jones
FAIRFAX NZ
TRAINER-DRIVER: Mark Jones

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Ohoka Texas could race in Australia after competing in today's $40,000 Invercargill Cup at Ascot Park.

Burnham trainer-driver Mark Jones and owners, the Dallas Cowboys Syndicate, are to meet soon to discuss the entire's future. The 10-member syndicate bought Ohoka Texas in November after negotiations to sell him to a United States buyer fell over.

''He was meant to be sold to America, but no money came through,'' Jones said.

Jones trained and drove Ohoka Texas to win the Invercargill Cup 12 months ago and yesterday, the horseman reckoned his charge was again in fine fettle for this year's edition.

''If he steps away and puts himself in the race (leading or handy), he's capable of winning,'' Jones said.

Ohoka Texas's latest start resulted in him finishing second in a four to eight-wins handicap at Addington eight nights ago.

Cup favourite Franco Ledger came through last week's Northern Southland Cup run in good order and subsequent training had been up to standard, trainer-driver Hamish Hunter said.

Franco Ledger finished third in a fast-run Northern Southland Cup, which was won by outstanding pacer Terror To Love.

''The speed throughout was poured on, everybody was flat,'' Hunter said. A strong wind also hampered runners.

''He doesn't have to improve much to be in the money again,'' Hunter said of Franco Ledger.

Malaz, trained and driven by Hunter, won the 1985 Invercargill Cup. The horseman was second with Franco Ledger last year, while his other drives in the stayers' test have been Grenadier (fourth, 2006, eighth, 2005, seventh, 2003), Stand Asquire (seventh, 2004) and Cool Man Cam (10th, 2002).

***

Selections:

Race 1: Typhoon Tan, Billy Klondike, My Guy Mac.

Race 2: Juneamy Castleton, Galaxy Hunter, Tinted Light.

Race 3: Galactic Galleon, Curragh's Princess, Deano Robyn.

Race 4: King Kenny, The Fiery Ginga, Superstarourwishes.

Race 5: Awesum Teddy, Brindy, Hilarious Legend.

Race 6: Justalittlebettor, Flying Anvil, Backandbeyond.

Race 7: Princess Delight, Tact Hayleys Delight, Shezaball.

Race 8: Saveapatrol, Captain Webber, V C Dell.

Race 9: Franco Ledger, River Black, Artiface.

Race 10: Alex, Ardghal, Canardly Lover.

Race 11: Free Dreams, Yankee One, Night In Bombaby.

Race 12: Its Ollies Mistake, Little Einstein, Treasure Hunter.

Best bet: Saveapatrol.

Longshot: Rapid Sequence (R11).

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- The Southland Times

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