NOBODY gave Simmo much of a chance in the Flat Knacker last year.
And nobody is giving the Rob Wellington-trained gelding much chance again, either.
Simmo, which stunned the field and plenty of punters at the juicy odds of $26 in last year’s race, will again be out to cause an upset at Albury racecourse.
And, in an ominous warning, Wellington says the five-year-old is on par, if not better, than he was 12 months ago.
“He’s working a little bit better than last year,” Wellington declared.
“The track conditions aren’t going to affect him and I’d say he’s on par, if not a little bit better, than last year.”
Wellington knows the cards are stacked against him today.
But they were last year, too.
“It’d be nice to win again but I think it’s looking like a stronger race than last year,” he said.
“But we’ve freshened him up and he’s done nothing wrong.
“There were a couple of standouts last year and there are this year, too.
“We were lucky enough last year that those horses probably didn’t perform on the day.
“But we couldn’t be happier with the horse, though.”
The $50,000 race over 900 metres has again attracted a quality field of competitors, with the $50,000 bonus on offer — should the winner clock a time faster than 50 seconds — proving too hard to ignore.
Local pair Chinzia (Brian Cox) and Bossdon City (Brett Cavanough) loom as the leading chances and look certain to be backed heavily.
Simmo, out to become the first horse to win back-to-back Flat Knacker races, has been installed at $16 in early markets.
Wellington will be hoping to continue his strong start to the Albury carnival, striking gold in the third race yesterday with Speedy Holly.