Uncommon James to bounce back in Kingsford Smith Cup

Trainers Steven O’Dea and Matthew Hoysted are keen to see Uncommon James recapture the form that saw the sprinter win a Group 1 race in Melbourne.

Uncommon James won the Oakleigh Plate at Sandown in February last year, but in seven appearances since, has been unable to breakthrough for another win.

The Eagle Farm based trainers are hoping that breakthrough may come in the Group 1 Kingsford Smith Cup (1200m) on their home track on Saturday.

While Uncommon James has been winless since that Oakleigh Plate success, he did go on to run second in the Group 1 The Galaxy at Rosehill last year along with chasing home Imperatriz at Moonee Valley on two occasions when third in both the Group 1 Moir Stakes and the Group 1 Manikato Stakes.

In between those two Moonee Valley efforts was a second-place finish to Asfoora in the Group 2 Schillaci Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield.

Uncommon James resumed this campaign finishing fifth in The Galaxy at Rosehill in March before posting a disappointing effort when second-last in the Group 2 Victory Stakes at Eagle Farm back on May 4.

Hoysted said he and O’Dea had put a line through that run after the first half of the race went pear-shaped for the gelding.

Uncommon James has since had a jump-out and ridden quietly, he finished off the workout in far better shape.

“He finished off well and was good through the line,” Hoysted said.

“We couldn’t fault him after the run physically, it was just the first half of the race that brought him undone, so we rode him a little bit quieter in his jump-out and he attacked the line really good.”

Hoysted said Uncommon James would strip fitter on Saturday and believes the gelding is still in good order as a rising six-year-old that has raced only 15 times for six wins and six minor placings.

“It will be a good test for him on Saturday,” Hoysted said.

“On his form and on that last run, everyone is putting a line through him, which is probably understandable.

“But I think we can more-or-less put a line through the run after what happened early and if the real Uncommon James steps up, he’s a much better chance that what his current price is.”

Uncommon James has gate 11 on Saturday in the 12-horse field and is a $34 chance, in a market led by I Wish I Win at $3.30 ahead of Think About It and Bella Nipotina, both at $6.

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