Waller camp aiming up at The Gong

The Chris Waller team are looking to roll deep into The Gong.

Waller experienced success in the inaugural running of The Gong with Mister Sea Wolf saluting in 2019 and he will aim to have plenty of arsenal leading into this year's edition. 

Perhaps his best chance is Osipenko who has had somewhat of a chequered passage on the way to the Kembla Grange feature next Saturday with runs in the Winx Stakes, Memsie, Maybe Diva and Turnbull. Aside from a 'failure' in the Turnbull last time out, the son of Pierro has been right there in the three runs leading up to that 2000m effort.

Stable representative Charlie Duckworth is hopeful that their four-year-old can finally get the job done this campaign.

"Osipenko is probably going to be a leading hope, he's a genuine Group 1 performer," Duckworth said. 

"He's going there to try and win a big one for the prep, (it) just hasn't worked out for him.

"We ran him over 2000m (in the Turnbull), we don't think he really stayed. We came back in distance and then he was obviously scratched out of the Golden Eagle. 

"Perth was too much of a stretch going there with a horse on a set back so therefore we've decided to stay home and stick to New South Wales." 

Another Waller galloper, European import Age Of Kings, will also target the $1 million contest and Duckworth is still in the dark as to what talent the Kingman entire possesses.

"Obviously Age Of Kings was caught in the middle of that scrimmage when they straightened up (in the Golden Eagle) so we didn't learn a massive amount," Duckworth said. 

"But we think he'll be better for having that first Australian start and he's a class horse.

"He's a Royal Ascot winner, but obviously needs things to happen his way Saturday."

Never one to do things by halves, Waller may indeed have more than those two going around in Wollongong next weekend. 

"You've got Waterford, Wicklow who comes out of the Big Dance and Skyman and New Mandate actually," Duckworth said. 

Kembla Grange will play host to a standalone ten-race card next Saturday with the $300,000 The Warra complimenting The Gong.

Chris Waller, picture