PeTeBe shares his Canterbury Park tips and picks for Wednesday 5 May 2021.
Today’s best bet, NICTOCK missed out on his hat-trick last time out when finishing fifth over 1100M, 1.8L behind the winner, but he had to be restrained off the heels of other runners at the 800M mark and was then denied a clear run at the 350M pole. The form of that race has been franked and given the small field here, he should have better luck in running. He has also cracked pole position to aid his cause.
QUIET RIOT has only had the five runs to date but has already posted two wins. He is seldom far off the action in those races he has not won and finished sixth last time out over 1300M, just over three lengths back from the winner. The form of that contest has stood up well with two runners subsequently winning. He has a handy draw two and will get a set of blinkers fitted for the first time today. If these have the desired effect, he could emerge as the biggest danger to the top choice.
ZELIFY is a 3yr old filly taking on the boys, but she showed marked improvement to win her last start over six furlongs by 0.8L. She came three-wide into the home straight that day but finished off her race well to claim that victory. With the late scratchings, she come into gate six and should be involved in the finish.
KOBE ROCKS won his first race in Australia over six furlongs and then had nothing go his way before finishing ninth next time out over the same trip, 2.2L adrift of the winner when returning from a 22-week rest. He jumped awkwardly and then had to be steadied off the heels on other runners at the 400M mark. In addition, he was bumped on the home turn and was hanging in over the latter stages of the race. Under the circumstances, he did well to finish as close to the winner as he did and as such, he is taken to be the value bet on the day’s program. The colt has pulled gate six, which should not cause him an issue. A 4yr old and a 3yr old filly could chase him home, with the slight preference going to
VAN GIZ, who is drawn one outside the top pick and who has consistent formlines to her name. She jumped awkwardly and had to be steadied at the 900M mark before eventually ending up in sixth place in her last outing over 1100M, just over two lengths behind the winner.
SAHRA has finished third in her last two runs, the latest when just under three lengths back from the winner over 1100M, when returning from a 14-week absence. She didn’t handle the turn that day, but hopefully from draw three today, this will not be repeated here.
The top three selections in this race renew their rivalry and the finish to that last outing together could well be confirmed. RAPTURES is a 4yr old filly taking on males, but she won that last encounter over nine furlongs by half a length, this despite jumping awkwardly and then coming four wide into the home straight. She wore down the leaders over the latter stages and should appreciate the extra ground on offer here. Her cozy draw two is a plus.
ROCK THE BELLS on the other hand will have to negotiate gate ten and did finish second to the former in the race mentioned above, that half-length behind. He did however over race in the early stages and came three-wide into the straight, before making good late progress in the latter stages. He does meet the top pick on 1kg better terms today, which should bring them closer together, but the former is still preferred.
MY DELIGHT has a kinder draw three and is a 3yr old filly who finished fourth that day, 1.4L off the winner. She did come the widest of them all into the home straight that day but battled all the way down to the wire. She is 1.5kgs better off with the top choice today, but may still have to settle for the same result.
MEDIA STARGUEST showed good improvement to finish in second spot last time out over 1500M, 0.8L back from the winner. He did not get the clearest of passages in the straight but was closing in on the eventual winner over the dying stages of the race. He faces a wideish draw eight, but on the plus side, will have 2kgs removed from his allocated weight courtesy of his claiming apprentice.
KUTAYHA has pulled pole position and has finished third in his last two outings, the latest over twelve furlongs, 1.3L behind the winner. He returns from a 19-week break but has had the benefit of two barrier trials on the synthetic track to prove his fitness. He does take a big drop in distance, but represents a top trainer/jockey combination and must be respected in this line-up.
GEMMAHRA is a 5yr old mare taking on males, but she won her penultimate run over seven furlongs and then disappointed when finishing thirteenth last time out over the same trip, nearly seven lengths behind the winner. It must however be noted that she was reported to be making an abnormal respiratory noise that day, so that effort is best ignored. From draw six, she should give the boys a good run for their money.