The King’s Hall Jewellers Silver Goblet has struggled to find a permanent home in recent years but Dubbo Turf Club is keen to build the two-year-old feature into one of the more prestigious events on the calendar.
The Silver Goblet will be run on Friday during what shapes as a bumper seven-race showcase meeting at the Dubbo track.
Last year the two-year-old event was run on a Sunday while it has also been contested on a Tuesday in recent times.
But by having at as part of a showcase meeting, where minimum prizemoney is raised from $20,000 to $30,000, the club hopes it is on the path to making it one of the region’s premiers events.
“It’s certainly one we’re looking forward to and we’re going to continue to reinvigorate it,” Dubbo Turf Club general manager Vince Gordon said.
“It’s been shifted around a bit in recent years but we want to give it a bit more prestige and build it towards being a major two-year-old race.
“We don’t want to take away from what it is now, it’s been the King’s Hall Jewellers Silver Goblet, but it’s got the potential to become a real feature two-year-old event in country racing.”
Last year’s event was won by hometown trainer Clint Lundholm in an almighty boilover, as $101 shot Check The Tickets saluted.
Lundholm won’t feature in this year’s Silver Goblet but there’s still a strong presence of Dubbo trainers.
Darren Hyde’s Bedtime Stories shapes as one to watch after winning on debut at Coonamble while Garry and Dar Lunn nominated Artful Wordsmith and Isaac’s Kolt respectively.
Leading regional trainers Brett Cavanough and Melissa Dennett have also put forward chances while a number of provincial trainers are also in the mix.
Leading Newcastle trainer Kris Lees nominated Magnolia Power while Group 1 winner Gerald Ryan is likely to be represented at Dubbo after giving Nuke the nod to contest the $30,000 event.
The Goblet shapes as being just one of the highlights in the Chamber of Commerce Rhino Cup Race Day.
The $40,000 Country Maiden Plate attracted a huge 34 nominations while the Open Handicap (1000m) sprint event is certain to feature a number of class gallopers.
Lundholm will be in that race with his consistent Joey’s Destiny while Brett Thompson’s champion Slate On Edge, the Cameron Crockett-trained Sharpe Hustler, Cavanough’s Just A Bullet and the impressive Somebody, from the Bathurst stables of Don and Andrew Ryan, are also likely to get a start.
The Country Class 2 Plate (1300m) was another popular event, attracting 30 nominations.
Final fields for the eight-race meeting are released on Friday.