Paragon chasing home track stakes win

Friday 29 December 2017, 5:19pm

John Sargent hopes the combination of a seasoned stayer, an in-form jockey, a light weight and a small field can give Paragon a stakes win at Randwick.

The ex-pat New Zealand trainer cited those factors as confidence boosters ahead of Monday's Listed Tattersalls Club Cup (2400m), Paragon's first black-type race since a winter campaign in Brisbane.

"He's in form now and I thought it was a nice race to back him up in," Sargent said.

Paragon earned his place in the eight-horse field when he won a Benchmark Handicap (2110m) at Warwick Farm on December 23, his first win since August last year.

He will carry 53kg in Monday's race, and with Tim Clark is on holiday leading Sydney apprentice Rachel King takes the ride.

"It's a rise in class for him but he's won over the distance at Randwick. He's got a low weight and the fields are small at the moment so there's no reason to shy away from them," Sargent said.

He sought out King, who is 10th on the Sydney jockeys' premiership and eight wins clear of fellow apprentice Andrew Adkins, as she is familiar with riding on-speed horses because of her association with the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott stable.

"She rides very well and he's an on- pace sort of horse," Sargent said.

"He just has to bowl on up on the speed and make it a nice true staying test."

Sargent thought Paragon was approaching peak fitness three runs into a campaign with the Listed Gosford Gold Cup (2100m) on January 18 a target.

"He should be near his best now so this will give us a good gauge of where he is," he said.

Paragon, who has never finished better than fourth in Listed company, was a $13 chance on Friday in the TAB market led by the Waterhouse and Bott-trained Broadside ($2.30).

Sargent said three-year-old filly Luvaluva, who won the Group Two Wakeful Stakes (2000m) at Flemington last month, returned to his Randwick stable last week.

Her upcoming preparation is aimed at the Group One Australian Oaks (2400m) at Randwick on April 14.

– AAP

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