Little Digger has won nine 520m races at Wentworth Park and is poised to prove his remarkable versatility by taking out Saturday night's Duke's Ladbrokes Previews Stakes, a top grade 720m event at headquarters.
The Raymond Smith-trained Little Digger stepped out over 720m for the first time last Saturday night at Wentworth Park and after being third in the early stages, finished second to Sydney's champion stayer Poco Dorado.
Although Little Digger finished just over nine lengths from the winner, who clocked a slick 41.87sec, the rookie stayer recorded encouraging long-distance debut figures of 42.54sec.
Smith has three of the seven starters in Saturday's race, with outsider Big Daddy Bee in box two and the in-form Midnight Treat drawn in eight.
Midnight Treat is a proven Wentworth Park 720m performer, having posted three wins and a dozen placings from 24 long-distance assignments at the track.
But Smith leans to Little Digger as his most likely winner.
"Hopefully Little Digger will have learned something from the experience of his first staying race last week,'' Smith said.
"And Midnight Treat is not well drawn on the extreme outside, she would be better suited boxed near the rails.''
Two Times Twice has been placed just twice in seven starts since resuming from a three months' injury-enforced spell but is set to bounce back to the winning list in Saturday night's Ladbrokes Odds Boost Stakes, a 520m Free-For-All at Wentworth Park.
Two Times Twice, who has won five of his 20 Wentworth Park 520m races, fractured a hock in June but his best effort since returning was a fast-finishing second over 618m at Richmond on November 8.
In that race Two Times Twice began well from box two but wanted to veer wide, found trouble, and was a distant fourth on the back straight.
He rattled home to get within a length of the winner, Canya Ayden, and is far better placed drawn in box eight on Saturday.
"Since coming back Two Times Twice has been trialling really well but has not been producing his form at home in his races,'' trainer John Finn said.
"He doesn't like having dogs on his outside so box eight on Saturday night is perfect.''
Maitland trainer James Porter could land a winning double at Wentworth Park on Saturday night with Double Stitched in box seven in race one and Double Mack drawn in six in race two, both 520m fifth grades.
Although Double Stitched has earned $44,340 in stakes compared with Double Mack's tally of $25,145, Porter said Double Mack was slightly quicker.
"I can't recall Double Stitched having ever finished in front of Double Mack in a trial,'' Porter said.
"But they are both racing extremely well at present, with Double Stitched having had two wins and three seconds from his past five starts and Double Mack winning or being placed in his past eight races.
"Double Mack was particularly impressive when he ran down Chase The Cash to win over 565m at Maitland on November 8 while Double Stitched has won two of his past three starts.''
Although Porter's duo have drawn wide, they have each displayed the ability to handle outside boxes.
Double Stitched has won nine of 21 starts from boxes six and seven while Double Mack has won three of seven starts from box eight.
Best Bet Little Digger (race 4)
Best Value Two Times Twice (race 8)
Quaddie race 5 - 5, 8, 2
Race 6 - 4, 1, 2
Race 7 - 1, 4, 7
Race 8 - 8, 5
$20 for 37.03%