Caption: Correy Grenfell and Yozo Bale after victory in last year’s Wagga Cup.

TOP young Victorian trainer Correy Grenfell is hoping his country Cups champion Yozo Bale can successfully defend his Wagga Cup crown.

“He won last year and is probably my best chance to defend the title,” Grenfell said last month.

Yozo Bale’s Wagga triumph had followed victories in the 2020 Ballarat and Bendigo Cups and his form since then has been outstandingly consistent.

The eight-time Group finalist just failed last month to add another Ballarat Cup title to his record, finishing second to Compliance, and Grenfell is hoping he can go one better at Wagga.

Carrying Group 3 status for the first time, the Ladbrokes Graeme Hull Memorial Wagga Cup over 525m has a winner’s prize of $25,000.

The series begins with heats on May 27 and the final will be run a week later – Friday, June 3.

Grenfell and his wife Samantha led in the trifecta last year with Yozo Bale, Xavien Bale and Usman Bale after rugging up half the field in the Cup finale.

And they could go close to a repeat serve this year.

Grenfell said he was hoping to bring at least six dogs to Wagga from his Anakie base in Victoria.

Meanwhile, Wagga’s racing manager John Patton said he was expecting a strong contingent of visiting dogs for the Cup.

He said leading trainers Frank Hurst, Andy and Jodie Lord, Justin King and Michael Clayton were all likely to be represented in the series.

Patton said the club also had a number of strong support races including the $4500 Wayne ‘Butch’ Pertzel Memorial 5th Grade (400m) and the $2960 Men Of League Agro Challenge 1-4 wins 5th Grade (320m).

“We’ll have something for everyone and players from Wagga junior rugby league clubs will compete in relay races and passing competitions,” he said.

Wagga Gold Cup Honour Roll: 1998 Drumwood Prince; 1999 Quick Cruiser; 2000 Jackie Fitz; 2001 Supreme Times; 2002 Simcomm; 2003 Darby’s Hawk; 2004 Creative Wish; 2005 Scrumptious; 2006 Bank Manager; 2007 Lake Stunner; 2008 Dana Gretel; 2009 Dana Beatrice; 2010 True Kihael; 2011 Country Rebel; 2012 Wenzke; 2013  Jimmy Lane; 2014 White Spyro; 2015 Cosmic Prince; 2016 Max’s Destruction; 2017 Ferrero Miss; 2018 Gunshot Ridge; 2019 Good Odds Buddy; 2020 -; 2021 Yozo Bale.