Iain Hyndman's Trentham Tips
1: Mandalay, Adequacy, The Arabian Duke
2: Dontbreakmyheart, Kiddo, Mesmerize
3: The Shackler, Iffitel, Second Innings
4: Red Sierra, Perfect Harmonee, Brother One
5: Wise Men Say, Tizza Secret, Chocolate Fish
6: Pacorus, El Luchador, Trisha Lea
7: Rosewood, Dez, Doiknowyou
8: Two Thirty, Keep It Savvy, Akoya Pearl
Best Bet: Red Sierra (R4)
Wise Men Say's future is in the balance based on his performance in Saturday's Grant Plumbing Wellington Steeplechase (5500m) at Trentham.
The extra distance and prospects of a wet Trentham track puts the eight-year-old right in the frame despite his apparent dislike of the figure eight course where the surface in the middle is often too good for him.
That was the only reason trainer Raymond Connors could find for Wise Men Say's failure in the McGregor Grant Steeple run there three starts back.
A fourth in the Manawatu Steeple and second last start in the Hawkes Bay Steeplechase suggest he is back on track and the 5500m of Saturday's assignment is ideal.
Connors has two paths to take after Saturday.
"I'm probably leaning toward the Grand National at Christchurch, but we'll see what happens at the weekend first," Connors said.
The change of venue of this year's Irvine's Great Northern Steeplechase (6400m), which Wise Men Say won last year, is swaying Connors.
"If it was at Ellerslie he'd go there, but the track may be a bit good at Te Rapa for him," he said.
Meanwhile, Marilyn Paewai has opted to go to Trentham on Saturday with her stable star Rosewood.
The Inglewood-based horsewoman had considered waiting for the Listed Powerworx Opunake Cup (1400m) at New Plymouth a week later, but will instead back the mare up in the Hanley Formula Whyte Handicap (1600m).
Rosewood has won three of her four starts this preparation and apprentice Billy Pinn has been booked for the ride. The three-kilo claimer was successful aboard the four-year-old at Trentham in May.