Sports

Michael Costa sends three horses to Ballina and stats say one of them should win

Michael Costa heads to Ballina with three horses and if the stats hold up, the Gold Coast trainer is guaranteed a winner.

Reigning Missile Stakes and Ramornie Handicap winning trainer Michael Costa is taking three horses to Ballina on Monday and if the stats are right; at least one of them is guaranteed to win.

The Gold Coast-based Costa has a massive winning strike-rate at his home track of 29 per cent according to Racing And Sports database.

But of the 24 different venues where Costa has saddled-up winners, Ballina is the track with the highest percentage of winners – that is an extraordinary 34.8 per cent.

Given that translates as into one out of every three, it’s good news for at least one of Costa’s Ballina-bound trio: Thisland Is Myland, Brave Nick and the untapped Hostwin Toronado.

Hostwin Toronado has been a revelation in his two starts for Costa, winning his maiden at the Gold Coast nine days ago by four and a half lengths as the $1.35 favourite.

“When he arrived, just based on his form, I was probably close to not taking the horse on,’’ Costa revealed.

“But he has come along in leaps and bounds from the trials. He was unlucky in his first race at Ipswich. He got back and tried to swoop, it was just a disaster really.

“He was very dominant in a weak enough field (at the Gold Coast) but he has gone to another level.’’

In some ways he will have to, given that he steps out of maiden company for the first time and will carry 60.5kg in Monday’s Tursa Handicap (1250m), a full four and a half kilos more than he shouldered at the Gold Coast on October 23.

The good news is he drew barrier one.

“It’s a huge asset to have the soft draws there at Ballina,’’ Costa said.

“We’ve got Andrew Mallyon on as well, he’s a city class rider, so that’s another positive.

“He is a big horse and it is only 1250m and I think the ones at the lower end of the weights are very limited so if he can’t get carry that then we’d be in a little bit of pain.’’

Hostwin Toronado is a son of Deep Field who won his first five starts culminating in the Linlithgow Stakes on this day seven years ago.

Originally published as Michael Costa sends three horses to Ballina and stats say one of them should win



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