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By Kobie O’Brien
Matt Kropp trained Marksfield will be looking for a well-deserved return to town when he takes on 10 opponents in the 2019 TAB Battle of the Bush Bundaberg qualifier on Saturday.
The eight-year-old gelding has re-emerged at the non-tabs in 2019, interestingly after winning a Class B at Miles back in 2015. Following his win at Chinchilla on the 13th of April, Marksfield has now had five starts at country tracks this year with trainer Kropp declaring the Battle of the Bush series was the obvious target.
Marksfield will be the deserved top-weight when he steps out in open company on Saturday however the last start winner at the track looks ominous on paper despite the wide draw.
“He’s probably going to get a bit of weight on Saturday but he coped well with the sand track there once before.” Kropp said.
The one-time Doomben winner was far too strong for Al’s Briefs and All Host here back on the 16th of March, running away by 3 lengths. However, he was well beaten by Glenn Richardson’s Bel Seleva the start prior and also finished down the track behind Gladstone Battle of the Bush winner Fab’s Cowboy three starts back at Roma, which provides a very interesting scenario to line up form for this Bundaberg qualifier.
Should Marksfield qualify in his first attempt, the stable will be quietly confident heading into the big dance after their gelding was beaten just 0.2L when finishing 2nd to Mr Markou in a 1MW race at Doomben back in February.
“It’s a nice race for him.” Kropp said.
“That is the way this horse was heading anyway. He’s that one metro win type of horse but now we might go through and try and win a few country cups or something like that.”
“He may be on the truck to Birdsville races or maybe even Oak Park or something like that later on in the year.”
Marksfield has drawn barrier 10 with Gary Geran staying on after his last-start success aboard the horse at Chinchilla. It is again a very competitive field featuring the likes of Bel Seleva shooting for 7 wins in succession, track specialist Al’s Briefs and stablemate All Host who is coming off an impressive run in the Country Cup at Rockhampton last start.
The Bundaberg qualifier is race 4 on the card and will be run at 3:40pm.