Leading Wagga trainer Trevor Sutherland has labelled lightly-raced filly Sheeza Menzies as the best of his chances at Murrumbidgee Turf Club (MTC) on Saturday.
A big crowd is tipped to turn out at the MTC for the annual Christmas Party race day.
And Sutherland is hoping to have something to celebrate himself with up to 11 horses to represent his stable on the day.
Sutherland expects a bold showing from Sheeza Menzies in the Iron Jack Fillies & Mares Maiden Handicap (1200m).
The three-year-old, by Nicconi, is out of Mrs Menzies, who had 101 starts for Sutherland and earned more than $100,000 in prizemoney.
"Sheeza Menzies has had her first few runs and has hit the line very good every time," Sutherland said.
"Up to the 1200 metres should suit her so I expect her to run very well."
Mick Travers will take the ride on Sheeza Menzies, from barrier three, and will also saddle up last-start winner Azaryah in the JRC Electrical Services Benchmark 58 Handicap (1800m), which is a heat of the Wagga Stayers Series.
Sutherland believes the mare, who was first up for almost two years and scored an amazing comeback win at the Gundagai carnival, is one of his better chances.
"Azaryah won well the other day," he said.
"I would have loved a mile for her but couldn't find one anywhere so being a home game I decided on the 1800. Fitness wise she's pretty good but I'm always a bit nervous when they go from a maiden to (benchmark) 58 for the first time.
"I think she'll run a good race again and she certainly hasn't gone backwards."
Sutherland also hopes he can win the last, the MSS Media C,G&E Benchmark 58 Handicap (1300m), with either Jungle Book or Kappy Cino.
"I think they'll go fast so Kappy Cino should be able to take a sit off them and run well," he said.
"Jungle Book got caught on a limb there at Kembla last week and it was just suicide what he ended up doing the other day. With a soft run he's always a chance of sprinting past them."
Sutherland believes all his horses have been 'a bit fat' over the last couple of weeks after he experimented with a different feed but expects his team to be looking much better at Wagga on Saturday.
He is disappointed, however, that the rail is out nine metres for the TAB meeting.
"It will be an interesting day (on Saturday)," he said.
"With the rail way out it will be pretty tight and compact racing and normally it's hard to make ground.
"I think it's crazy the rail out where they've got it, especially with not a lot of racing on at the moment.
"We'd almost be better off racing on the B-grass."