Winning Form Best Bets
Race 4: BUCKINGHAMPSHIRE(6)
Race 5: EASTERN FRONT(12)
Race 6: THE CONGLOMERATE(3)
Race 7: COLD AS ICE(12)
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Jockey: MJ BYLEVELD - Trainer: Vaughan MARSHALL
The usual competitive sprint contest kicks off the day's proceedings and there are some quality speedsters on display. NIGHT OF STARS is improving smartly and she showed an exciting turn of foot when she cruised to victory over a subsequent easy winner over this c & d, four weeks ago. She was deservedly handed the maximum eight pound penalty but has huge potential and will handle this rise in class. The Marshall inmate should give another very good account of herself.
Race 4: PRINCESS ROYAL(4)
Jockey: Greg CHEYNE - Trainer: Glen KOTZEN
The well-related PRINCESS ROYAL landed the gamble with an impressive debut win over 1100m on this track, two weeks ago. The half-sister to former champion Princess Victoria (won this race in 2011) showed a good turn of foot that day and won with plenty in hand. She takes a rise in class now but obviously has tons of potential and that experience will be priceless. She will again represent an in- form combination and could follow in her sister's footsteps. However, she will get stiff opposition from the Dennis Drier inmate SEVENTH PLAIN.
Race 6: ACT OF WAR(1) - TOP BET
Jockey: Anton MARCUS - Trainer: Joey RAMSDEN
The brilliant ACT OF WAR ditched the recent Politician Stakes and that deserved short break would have done him the world of good. Of course, he was sensational when he drew off to beat a former Grade 1 winner in the Guineas over a mile on this track in late December. The son of Dynasty has lots more improvement in him and this trip should be no issue. Anton Marcus has won aboard him before and the pair will be very tough to beat from pole position. A likely sedate gallop won't hurt his chances as he boasts a serious turn of foot.
Race 8: FUTURA (2) - J&B MET
Jockey: Bernard FAYD'HERBE - Trainer: Brett CRAWFORD
The trick to solving the puzzle to this fascinating Grade 1 contest is determining the pace or lack thereof. The slow pace of last year's event put paid to the chances of many fancied rivals. However, that may not stop them from dominating this time around, particularly as they represent the recent Queen's Plate formline, the event that was run at a pedestrian pace.
FUTURA has been excellent since winning on this day a year ago and most importantly, he has trained on this campaign. After being close-up to LEGISLATE in the July, he needed his comeback run behind the same rival but showed his class en route to his first Grade 1 success in the Queen's Plate, three weeks ago. The Dynasty gelding will be even better over this ten furlongs and he has his third run back from a break.
LOUIS THE KING is top class and he has come back to best after his July mishap. He showed his mettle with a cracking last Queen's Plate effort and will also prefer this trip.
Race 12: COLTRANE(3)
Jockey: Anton MARCUS - Trainer: Joey RAMSDEN
The chestnut gelding COLTRANE has been excellent in his last two starts and he has a bright chance of completing the hat-trick today. The Giant's Causeway gelding ran on from far back to beat GOTHIC by three parts of a length over 2500m in his penultimate start.He then followed that up when dead-heating for first with CURRENT EVENT over this c & d in a pinnacle contest, three weeks ago. Of course, the Ramsden inmate was runner-up in this particular event a year ago and he is well-weighted to go one better. Marcus knows him well and the former champion jockey will be aiming to go back-to-back in this event.
Jockey: Richard FOURIE - Trainer: Justin SNAITH
There are some quality three-year olds on display in this handicap and a really exciting finish is on the cards. ST TROPEZ is improving rapidly and he came widest into the straight but still cruised clear of his opposition to win his handicap debut over this c & d, three weeks ago. He was handed a five pound penalty but has lots more improvement to come and is searching for a quick hat-trick of wins. However, his pedigree suggests that he prefers further and that could open the door for an equally talented sort in the form of FIRE MASTER from the Justin Snaith yard. This son of Jet Master was an impressive maiden winner over six furlongs second time out and he improved when catching the eye on his handicap debut, recently. The chestnut colt ran on smartly for 3rd, beaten just under two lengths behind the former that day and is 2.5kgs better off at the weights. That was his first venture around the turn and that experience will be priceless. He has lots of scope for more improvement and will be a totally different proposition today. He can reverse the form.
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