I Cast No Shadow during his Inter Dominion campaign. Photo by Amanda Rando
REIGNING Inter Dominion champion I Cast No Shadow will make his racing return at Club Menangle tonight.
Capturing the industry's 'Holy Grail' at Tabcorp Park Melton last December, I Cast No Shadow has been winless from his five subsequent starts, but was runner-up in the A G Hunter Cup on February 4.
Following his fifth at Menangle four weeks later, trainer Jason Grimson elected to give the son of Shadow Play a short break.
"He'd been up for a while and was due for a bit of time off," Grimson said.
Pleased with I Cast No Shadow's progress heading into his pending assignment, Grimson is quietly confident the stallion will play a strong role in the finish of the J D Watts Memorial.
To the master horseman's delight, I Cast No Shadow has drawn to use his gate speed from the pole.
"I'm pretty happy with the way he has come up," Grimson said. "It's a pretty tough ask first-up, but that's the grade he is in, with no easy races.
"He certainly gets his chance from the draw and be right in it.
"That said, whatever he does this weekend he will certainly improve on."
Despite his favourable draw, I Cast No Shadow has been kept safe in betting, with TAB Fixed Odds listing the seven-year-old at $10.
Fresh from his second in the inaugural The Nullarbor at Gloucester Park on April 14, Spirit Of St Louis heads the market at $2.40.
A recent trial winner, Spirit Of St Louis has drawn barrier four, but slots into three with the removal of the emergency.
Spirit Of St Louis will be joined by his Belinda McCarthy-trained stablemates Bondi Lockdown, Mach Shard and Artillery.
In what shapes as a 'Battle of the Barns', Grimson also has Fire Fox and Abouttime in the 1609-metre feature.
Fire Fox has fared well in barrier three, while Abouttime faces a tougher task from gate 10.
As for the 'McCarthy Mob', Bondi Lockdown will come from five, Mach Shard has drawn and Artillery will begin from nine.