Eight heats of the prestigious event will be conducted, with the winners progressing to the final the following Monday night.
A National Group 2 event, the Launceston Cup carries prize money of $40,000 to the winner, $9,600 to the second place getter, $4,500 to the third place getter, $1,000 to the fourth place getter and then $500 to all unplaced runners.
This provides further evidence that the sport in Tasmania is is thriving at the moment, although stakes may have peaked if current rumours are substantiated.
All eyes will be on the local star Rewind, the winner of 48 of 90 lifetime outings and stakes of in excess of $208,000, which has been freshened up since his luckless second placing behind Allen Benji in the Devonport Cup on Januatry 15.
An occupant of Maurie Strickland’s Bracknell kennel, the son of Collide is nearing the end of an illustrious career, but is sure to give a great sight from the yellow box in the first heat.
Irma Bale, prepared by champion trainer Graeme Bate, is the winner of 30 of 68 lifetime outings while accumulating a purse of in excess of $368,000 and will contest the eighth heat from the white box.
The bitch has recently returned from a highly successful Wentworth Park campaign and is the likely opening favourite for the Launceston Cup series.
Other interstate chasers to contest the event include Xylia Allen, Schroder Bale, Fully Advanced, Pop’s Max, Kevin Bale, Xenos Bale, Gold Town, Imry Bale and Joshua.
Tasmania will be represented by the likes of Dark Warrior, Miss Hetti, Paua Of Darkness, Nooee’s Lad, Millie Grace, Parisette, Cointreau Cap, Sonorous, Bergermeister, Tadmore Dunoon, Fulande, Rob Pines and Rumbling Rick.
Raced by champion cricketer Ricky Ponting, Rumbling Rick at only 22 months is highly promising, having won his last four outings from Dale Hammersley’s Newnham kennel.
By Cosmic Rumble from the dam of Rewind in Ricky’s Angel, he recorded the fastest time of the night at last Monday night’s LGRC meeting by recording a slick 29.58 in winning the Tattsbet Division 2 event by six lengths.
Nooee’s Lad, also 22 months old, ran an opening split of 4.97 when he also won at the meeting from the Butch Deverell kennel.
The son of Knocka Norris streeted his Country Club Tasmania Division 2 rivals, winning by six lengths in the time of 29.87.
Another local chaser to have struck form at the appropriate time is the Eileen Thomas prepared Cointreau Cap, which made it four wins in succession at Tuesday’s NWGRC meeting.
The son of Premier Fantasy has won seven of 12 lifetime outings and has never been out of a place in a racing career which commenced just six months ago.
Any Launceston Cup queries can be directed to LGRC Liaison Officer Richard Stamford on (03) 63 26 1834 or 0407 875 323.