Two Flemington runners for Purcell stable

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January 19, 2018 - 12:57 PM

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After getting his first city win at his most recent start, Sheriff John Stone will step up in grade at Flemington when he chases another victory.

The Aaron Purcell-trained four-year-old gelding won three country or provincial races from his first 15 starts before breaking through in town in a 1200m-benchmark 70 race at Caulfield last Sunday week.

"He really deserved his win in town," Purcell's assistant trainer Dave Eustace said.

"He steps up in grade on Saturday but he's raced once at Flemington down the straight and was third in a Listed race, so you'd be hopeful that off a low weight he should run another solid race."

Apprentice Brandon Stockdale will claim 2kg off Sheriff John Stone's 55.5kg in Saturday's njt20cricket.com.au Handicap (1200m) for which he was a $7 chance on race eve.

The Darren Weir-trained Handsome Thief, a luckless third in 84-grade at Caulfield first-up, was the $3.50 favourite.

The Purcell-trained import Guizot won a city race at Sandown at his first Australian start last March but is yet to break through for another despite coming close at his past three starts this preparation.

After winning a benchmark race at Pakenham in November, Guizot has been beaten less than a length in his past three starts in town and gets his next chance in Saturday's Bitalli Handicap (1800m).

"He's been very unlucky not to have won in town (this preparation)," Eustace said.

"He's ultra-consistent and he really deserves a win in town and he will soon."

Guizot is at $6 for the benchmark-84 race with the Craig Widdison-trained Willi Willi the $3.10 favourite stepping up to 1800m for the first time.