Cup contenders on track

The region’s best middle distance horses will clash in the $25,000 Port Lincoln Cup Prelude over 1750 metres this Sunday.

The race will paint a clearer picture as to who will be the leading local contenders in the Port Lincoln Cup on March 3.

Rooboy stuck on gamely in the Lock Cup after being involved in a speed battle throughout. He rates a chance if he can dictate from the front.

Montalto relished the step up in trip and solid tempo in her Lock Cup win and looms as a major player.

Zipalang and Artful Diva have similar form lines, expect both to be competitive with the miles in the legs.

Spalding Cove adds interest to the event as he steps up in journey.

Benchmark 80 1000m

Killawarra from the Carrison stable is a proven perfomer but will have to do everything right in an open race. He won't be able to miss the start here.

Big jump in grade for stablemate Last Dip but he has impressed this season.

Destony Hawk, Nippy Lippy, Propshaft, The Headliner and Tintagel Rocker can all win.

Benchmark 64 1390m

With 26 nominations this race could be split. Heza Hussler and Divadebeer were both huge runs last outings. If they repeat those performances they are the ones to work your investments around. Magical Tycoon should be respected in this grade.

Benchmark 60 1750m

The dually nominated Artful Diva is the one to beat if connections choose to run here. She made up huge ground late when runner-up to Zipalang last start. Ash Road is racing well and Casiraghi is the value.

Benchmark 60 1210m

Twenty-nine nominations with plenty of dual nominations. Copper Coast Raider has been turned out in good order by Brian Lear and can go on with the job. Dazzling Lilly looks suited at this level, Cyclone Striker is better than what we saw last start and Caligo can run a race on the fresh side.

Two-year-old 1210m

The youngsters get to the 1210 metres for the first time and there is no reason to suggest Mirthdale won't be able have them all off the bit chasing again and hold on. Horizon Watch looks an improver overground and Puzzlist is next best.

Maiden 1390m

The Julie Branford-trained Artful Iggy has been finding the line okay of late and if things go her way in transit she can be in the finish. Veloce Rock and Danoxie are other chances.

Maiden 1000m

Insky looks ready to win going on his last start second. Agnes Island is next best with the watch on Halls Bay as he returns to maiden grade.

Final fields and start times will be declared today.

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