TAB Great Chase semis: Scent of a Star!

High profile trainer Jason Thompson has enjoyed the ‘sweet smell of success’ with Australian sprint queen Black Opium.

The winning ‘scent’ may not be as strong – yet – with younger half-sister Immunity, but already there’s an ‘intense fragrance’ surrounding her future.

“Immunity is a nice type, but she’s nowhere near as good as Black Opium who was runner-up in a Melbourne Cup at 20 months of age,” Thompson said. “But she’s doing everything right and is very strong.”

Immunity (Dec ’18 KC And All x Captivating) – owned in the same interests as Black Opium – is unbeaten from six starts.

She’ll contest a Great Chase semi-final (525m) at The Meadows on Wednesday afternoon – Race 7 Box 6 at 1.22pm – and Thompson says, “it’ll be a good test to see where she’s at”. Immunity won her Great Chase heat over 450m at Shepparton in 25.30sec.

“Her first two races were at The Meadows, so it suits her really well… And she now knows what racing is about,” he added. “With a clean start and the right track conditions, she’ll run a lot quicker than what she’s run here to date. And if she’s able to lead, it’ll take a good one to get past her.”

Thompson’s main concern is having drawn the ‘green’ alley with Immunity. “She does prefer to be down near the fence,” he said.

Immunity will be joined in the Great Chase semis by litter brother Equalizer – Race 5 Box 2 at 12.42pm – who has won five races (with two seconds and one third) from 11 starts. Equalizer won his Great Chase heat over 460m at Geelong in 25.52sec (Best).

“He’s quicker than Immunity, always has been, but was doing a few things wrong when he first started off … He probably needed 10 starts or so to get his race wits about him,” Thompson said. “We wanted the inside with him, but he’s not bullet proof yet. However, if he gets his act together, he’ll be every bit as good as Immunity.”

Thompson also has Pirate Pete (Oct ’18 Dyna Tron x Luzaka Icon), a recent acquisition to his kennel, in a Great Chase semi – Race 8 Box 1 at 1.42pm.

“It’s a good draw, but he’s never had a 500-metre race… His Warragul win (25.61sec Best in a Great Chase heat over 460m) was good, but ideally it would have been handy to have a 500-metre run under his belt,” he said. “He’s got the motor, but he’ll need to do everything right.”

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