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 Australian Racing News 
Wednesday, July 12 2017

Rugby league legend Laurie Daley might still be able to salvage something from his latest trip to Queensland when Pop 'N' Scotch runs at the Sunshine Coast this weekend.

The coach of the defeated NSW Origin team is also a part-owner of the gelding who has run second in the Queensland Cup for the past three years.

Saturday's Listed race is one of the few feature races left in Australia over the Melbourne Cup distance of 3200 metres and trainer Liam Birchley hoping this will finally be Pop 'N' Scotch's year.

The Queensland Cup, one of the oldest races in the state, has been switched from Eagle Farm to the Sunshine Coast for the second time in its 140-year history.

That won't make any difference to Pop 'N' Scotch, who has been second once in the Cup at Caloundra and twice more at Eagle Farm.

Paul Hammersley is back on Pop 'N' Scotch trying to avenge a last-stride defeat by Mister Impatience two years ago. Ric McMahon rode him in 2014 when Iggi Pop won and Robert Thompson was aboard last year when he finished behind Murphy's Delight.

"Pop N Scotch is just a genuine two-mile horse and he deserves to win the Cup," Birchley said. "He was second as a three-year-old in the race at Eagle Farm when John Thompson had him.

"I got him after a Patinack dispersal sale and the Cup was run at Caloundra in 2015 and he shot away with what looked like a winning break.

"The winner got him on the line. It really was a case of having something won everywhere but the line."

Birchley has given him an easy lead-in to the Cup as Pop 'N' Scotch hasn't run since finishing midfield first-up in the Ipswich Cup on June 17.

"His main mission for the winter has always been the Queensland Cup," Birchley said.

The six-year-old's owners also include Daley's former teammate, now Canberra coach Ricky Stuart, and Darryl Brohman, the former Penrith Panthers captain.

Posted by: AT 12:49 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
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