Tony's Charmed tonic
Tony Newing had a good July Racing Carnival last year when the Gosford-based trainer celebrated three good wins.
It was his best carnival since he started making the annual pilgrimage back in 2000.
This year he has already amassed three winners for the carnival and hopes to surpass last year by winning with exciting Rock Sonic and in-form Charmed Princess.
Rock Sonic runs in today's $30,000 Winning Edge Presentations Class 2 Showcase Handicap (1600m), the gelding drawing barrier 10 with Matt McGuren on board.
McGuren also partners Charmed Princess in the $80,000 Tursa Grafton Guineas Quality (1600m) and they go from barrier 14.
Charmed Princess has won three of her last four starts, winning at Grafton in April, Canberra last month and then knocking over the Guineas Prelude at Grafton on June 30.
Barrier 14, Newing said, was no worry for his little mare, who had won four of her nine starts.
"That's a good gate for her, she gets back and gets to the line,” he said.
"There are a heap of scratchings now too.”
Seven scratchings leaves a field of nine.
Winning the Guineas Prelude also showed her liking for a track on which she was unbeaten.
"She won it like the quality horse she is,” Newing said.
She is also very similar to a previous little back marker Newing trained, Timeless Prince.
"She races like him - get back and get home,” he said.
"He (Timeless Prince) won 12 races, 10 of them on different tracks.”
Rock Sonic, Newing said, was a "beauty”.
He bought the gelding son of Al Maher for just $9000 and hoped he could develop into a Grafton Cup horse next year.
"He was a good buy,” Newing said.
"He's a nice big horse. Won his maiden on a heavy track at Wyong. He'll thrive on a soft track here.
"Just a shame he had a few setbacks and that put him back six months, otherwise I might have been looking at this year's Grafton Cup. He could be in it next year.”
While it took Newing a while to break his duck at Grafton, going six or seven years without a winner here, he is catching up quick - three last year and already three this year, with the prospect of his two runners making it a handful of wins this carnival.