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Believe what you see with Nettuno

Tony Gollan was on weather watch for all of his starters at Doomben on Saturday, but his main focus is on the feature — the Group 3 George Moore Stakes (1200m) — in which he’ll saddle nearly half the field with five runners.

Having won five of the past eight editions of the sprinting feature, Gollan’s headline chances in Zoustyle and last start winner Nettuno will be favoured especially if more forecasted rain arrives.

Baller (grey silks) is one of five George Moore Stakes starters for Gollan; picture Racing Photos 

Nettuno ($3.50), Zoustyle ($9), All That Pizzazz ($13), Baller ($15) and Vinco ($71) are all set to line up but it is the last start effort of Nettuno’s two-length victory in the Swiss Ace Plate (1000m) at Sunshine Coast a fortnight ago that has him most taken.

“Believe what you see,” Gollan said of the four-year-old entire who will carry 54-kilos with Ryan Maloney aboard. “With the set weights and penalties conditions of the Swiss Ace, he looked to be in there terribly but he demolished them.

“Back on 54-kilos here and over the Doomben 1200-metres with a low draw [(barrier 2], that is the final piece of the puzzle. It feels like the penny has dropped and if he races like that again, he is really well placed.”

Should the track remain affected, Nettuno’s chances are raised further having recorded four wins on wet ground. Similarly for Zoustyle who won the George Moore Stakes in 2021, and also returned in the Swiss Ace Plate for a strong fourth placing behind Nettuno.

“I can’t wait to see him back at Doomben,” Gollan said of the eight-year-old. “I loved his work on Tuesday and obviously Father Time is catching up with him, and all of us, but loved his effort in a torrid run in the Swiss Ace.

“He was the best of the on-pacers by far and I loved watching him go around at Doomben on Tuesday. He was so clean in his action and he loves that track. His record is unbelievable.

Zoustyle meets race favourite Rothfire ($3.20) favourite positively in the weights with a 4½-kilo differential.

Gollan concluded: “With Rothfire being there [carrying 61-kilos], it has brought this horse in really well at the weights. He can bounce and cross them and find that rail around Doomben.

“He’ll run a hell of a race and if you were on him at the Sunshine Coast, don’t get off him.”

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