Duncan Howells holds five cards in a ten-card field in the Jonsson Workwear Handicap on the Greyville poly tonight. The trick here is to pick the trump card – if he has one that is.
Most likely is the three-year-old Beat It who took to the poly with a smart victory over the speedy Yaas last time out. Beat It is not the easiest and can be a little hot in the preliminaries but she does have ability and appears to have taken to the synthetic surface.
Biggest threats could come in the form of Diamond Noir and Queen Of Alamo. Diamond Noir scored a narrow victory on the poly last time out beating Petra. The runner-up had shown early promise but had lost form before showing what she is capable off last time out.
Queen Of Alamo found a rejuvenated Miss Frankel too hot to handle in her most recent start but started at long odds although her best form has come on the poly.
Of the stable companions to Beat It, Dawn Calling is the most accomplished of the Howells runners but drops to a sprint after contesting the Michael Roberts Handicap while Lunar Rush is always dangerous and has been dropping in the handicap. From a good draw she is far from out of this while Accidental Tourist is something of a poly track specialist and can upset.
On a tricky card, Garth Puller’s runner Mana Santana could provide a life-line for exotic bet punters in the Drakenstein Stud Maiden Plate. Mana Santana was a beaten favourite last run but is by far the highest rated runner in the race and has a claiming apprentice aboard that should further enhance his chances.
Fabian Habib makes his first trip to Greyville as a trainer when he saddles a pair of ‘eagles’. Kayla’s Eagle can make it a winning debut when she contests the Betting World Maiden, second on the card. Kaya’s Eagle has improved with every outing and looks primed for this event although she will face stiff opposition from the likes of Maket and Green Caviar.
Tana’s Eagle faces a more difficult task in the Hollywoodbets Handicap, last race on the card. It is a seriously tricky race and best advice may be to go as wide a finances permit in the exotics.
Apprentice Xola Jacobs has only managed a single win in his short career but is more than capable and with his 4kg claim, Sarabi makes a lot of appeal. She will only have 50.5kg on her back over her preferred course and distance. Jacobs was aboard Yaas when touched off by Beat It last time out and a repeat of that effort can see her turn the tables on Louis Goosen’s runner.
The Track & Ball Apprentice Handicap could provide a rocky start to the Pick 6 with any number of runners in with chances. Walterthepenniless has improved in blinkers and won well first time out of the maidens. He looks capable of further improvement and could again consign The Private to a runner-up berth in spite of Michael Roberts’s gelding going well over course and distance although from a good draw should be right there. Trust In Gold was a recent maiden winner but that form has since been franked. He is also lightly raced and can still improve. Finally, Don Pierro has his first run for a new stable. He is not the easiest and races in pacifiers for the first time but does have ability and a win would not come as a surprise.
- Owing to a high demand for barrier trials on the Scottsville turf, a third trial has been added to Sunday’s meeting. Please check amended times and fields.
By Andrew Harrison