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Craig Grylls to continue early season winning roll
02 Sep 2016

Craig Grylls is a man on an early season mission.

The accomplished jockey sits atop the premiership table after a good start to the new term.

"I don't think I've been there before but I'll have to see how long it lasts," Grylls said as he prepared for his weekend rides.

Grylls achieved a career high of 78 winners, including a rare Wellington Cup-Thorndon Mile double, in 2014.

He's made a flying start with seven wins in the first month of this season and heads to Whanganui on Saturday with a promising six-ride book.

He has good mounts in the two Listed features and a strong chance to ride the first juvenile winner of the season.

Graeme and Debbie Rogerson-trained Gift Of Power impressed the experienced rider when he rode the Power filly to win a Te Teko trial in early August.

"She's a lovely filly," Grylls said. "Nice and strong and she won pretty easily at the trials.

"She was through the bridle to the line but it is a 2-year-old race and they've got to do things right."

From barrier two she can launch the Rogerson stable on a run like last season when they racked up winner after winner in juvenile races.

The Brendon Hawtin-trained Beachwood also won at Te Teko. He starts from the ace draw and could be Gift Of Power's biggest threat in the 790m dash.

In the $50,000 Listed O'Leary's Fillies Stakes (1200m), Grylls rides second starter Clairetheway, half-sister to stakes winner Our Rokkii.

Mark Forbes prepared him at Cambridge and also trains Clairetheway.

"I rode Babe to beat her at Te Rapa and it took a bit to get past her," Grylls said.

"I went to Cambridge on Wednesday to gallop her and left happy, she's a speedy athletic filly and a good ride."

Group I filly Luna Rossa from the Baker-Forsman stable will be tough to beat.

Grylls' mount Quantum is the upset hope against favourites Manhattan Street  and Highlad in the $60,000  Listed Wanganui Guineas (1340m).

"He went a good trial for me at Te Teko and Brendon [Hawtin] reports the horse is flying in his work."

Tim Ryan

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