Friday, 7 October 2011
: The feature sprint on the Kranji card tonight is a serious seven-horse sprint field containing all manner of outcomes and unlimited early pacemakers.
On what is an all poly track ten race card this evening and the only meeting this weekend at Kranji, it is the sixth race that holds real intrigue for bettors and form analysts alike.
The S$95K Benchmark 97 over 1100m may only have seven runners but you would have to say four and possibly five of them could win without causing a total shock.
When there is no money machine on course for bettors to cash in on called Joao Moreira, they will go for the poly track master Jose Verenzuela.
He won four races last weekend and is the professor of poly track racing, as he gets horses to race in or near the lead and relax even a width or two off the inside rail.
Verenzuela also kids his mounts into thinking they are not carrying as much weight as they really are and much like Moreira, they just simply run for the South American. Dictator
has won all his six races in Singapore on the poly and from 1000m to 1200m, with three of them coming at 1100m and that is the task tonight.
Amazingly five of his wins have come from barriers six to nine and just one win courtesy of the ace, so he likes time to work across and have clear air plus sitting deep is not a concern.
Last start the Michael Freedman trained sprinter copped some interference early and ended up in traffic and then wide before weakening in the G3 Woodlands over 1200m.
Bettors can dismiss the effort in what was also his first outing for a month and a half and it should also be noted he won second up last campaign.
Barrier two tonight normally may not have been of much help for Dictator looking at his racing record and style but when Verenzuela sits atop it is blazing saddles time.
He will get it out smartly then get it in rhythm and then prepare to launch it in the run home, so hopefully he has been warned about the fantastically boisterous owners of this sprinter.
They produce their own concert decibel level and really make racenight a raucous affair, with an opera of shrieking, screaming and sustained support.
Make sure you listen out or should that be earplugs at the ready, if Dictator is likely to win in the home straight.
If he draws away near the line then the concert will have already begun and just enjoy the show.
John Powell gets the ride on an older newcomer to Singapore called McClintock
, which is prepared for owner Gerry Harvey by Don Baertschiger.
Harvey won first up with another older horse he sent to Singapore called Parfumier at colossal odds for then trainer John Meagher and that horse is now with the Freedman stable.
McClintock is a big fast natural sprinter that loves to either lead or force the issue and crumble anything near him.
He has won both his trials at Kranji, with Powell on the first time and a fortnight later an apprentice rode.
The efforts were both good but he did not beat that much with the possible exception of the impressive three-year-old winner last weekend in Distinction.
Surprisingly we find just the one win fresh up for McClintock for a six-win sprinter that has had his share of issues and many campaigns over a thirty start career.
The 54kg he has been allotted will seem like a feather and barrier six is suitable for the seven-year-old gelding that likes plenty of room to come over.
His last two wins came at G3 in the spring of 2009 from double-digit barriers and in fact five of his six wins have come from wide draws.
If you do not get out of his way early he will soon use his imposing size to send out a message! Coup Align
has disappointed in two runs since coming to Singapore and while he led or made the lead each time, his blistering turn of speed was not there.
He looked to be almost pacemaking down on a few cyclinders and never slipped the field or was able too plus had no fight whatsoever in the run home.
His trainer Mark Walker has tried all sorts and a 3kg claimer atop tonight makes this G1 placed sprinter looked rather well in at 54kg from gate five.
The first trial last month for Coup Align
was in a hot heat and the chestnut went okay considering he was just there to get back in the zone.
Nine days later he won a trial easily but did not beat much, so you cannot read too much into that save the time was semi-respectable.
Once again Coup Align
has drawn a field of multiple early burners and it may be the sort of thing that can actually break him into a sweat and then look out when the floodgates open!
If you thought Dictator with six poly wins was impressive then Powerful Tree has won seven of his thirteen starts in Singapore and all have come on the all weather surface.
The gelding is almost unbeaten fresh up and placed in a recent trial looking in super shape, which was a heat that race rival tonight Coup Align
finished a length and half behind him.
Danny Beasley will ride for the first time and gate four plus 52.5kg for this natural leader/on pacer will ensure the fireworks early are a must see display. Powerful Tree
has only missed paying a dividend twice in his career and one of those came at G1 on turf behind Rocket Man. Ten Ten Lai
likes to come out flying and from the ace with a flyweight could try to hold the inside line.
His fresh up fourth over 1400m saw him lead then faint, so whether coming back 300m may see him not quite have as much explosive early speed is a real possibility.
The pair of eight-year-olds in Amadeus Mozart and Fantastic Owners look to have their work cut out here, as both last won a race on the poly in December 2008.
Enjoy the race and Dictator, McClintock, Coup Align
and Powerful Tree look the fab four in the feature event.