It took one of the most dominant horses in the history of the Albury City Handicap to deny hometown trainer Donna Scott last year and she hopes either Halo Warrior or Oamanikka can capture the feature on Thursday.
Scott, who trains just across the road from the Albury track, ran second last year with Bautista behind Mount Horeb and would dearly love to win the race for the first time.
Mount Horeb was freakish at Albury winning three consecutive City Handicaps in 2019, 2020 and 2021 - racing seven times at the course for a first-run second before six straight victories.
Scott will be back again with eight starters on Thursday and a few less on Friday and hopes a win or multiple victories come the way of the stable.
"It's always hard to win races at cup time and my best hopes are racing on Thursday," Scott said.
"I'm happy with both Halo Warrior and Oamanikka and they both race well at Albury.
"I will put the winkers on Halo Warrior because I have thought for a while he has needed some head gear on just to keep him focused."
Oamanikka (sixth) and Halo Warrior (ninth) finished behind Another One in the SDRA Country Championships Qualifier at Wagga.
Fellow City Handicap hopefuls, Swagger (fifth) and Mr Moppett (eighth) also took part and the latter will wear blinkers for the first time on Friday.
The top weight Calescent is in peak form, winning her latest start at Canberra when she led and kept running for apprentice jockey Jess Del Frari.
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The same tactics will be adopted again with Calescent to carry three kilograms extra weight this time.
The consistent Major Time was beaten three lengths in the same race when second and has since finished third behind subsequent Scone Country Championships Wild Card winner, Cavalier Charles.
Scott feels her duo will be competitive providing they bring their best.
"If Oamanikka can bring his run in the Wagga Country Championships to Albury he will be hard to beat," she said.
"He found the class a bit tough in Melbourne last start and will be better suited back to this grade at his home track."
"Halo Warrior races well at Albury and has been freshened up since his last run.
"He is getting up in class now and whether he can handle that we will know on Thursday."
Northernero has drawn the outside barrier in 14 and is coming off an impressive last-start victory at Corowa.
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