PeTeBe shares his Wagga tips and picks for Friday 7 May 2021.
Jackpot (race 5 – 8)
Best Bet: MARANOA (Race 6)
Value Bet: MONTEREY ZAR (Race 8)
ONTHETAKE is a 5yr old mare taking on the boys, but she has consistent formlines to her credit and was making good late progress when finishing second last time out over six furlongs, 0.8L behind the winner. The form of that race has stood up well with two runners out of that contest subsequently winning. She will need to negotiate draw twelve, but she could prove good enough to win here.
KING’S TRUST showed solid improvement when dropping to six furlongs, finishing third last time out 0.7L back from the winner when returning from a 14 week break. He had to be held up entering the home straight and only saw daylight at the 100M mark, before finishing strongly. He has a wideish gate nine, but he should be doing his best work late.
ZELAGO is drawn one inside the latter and is seldom far off the action, ending up in fourth place in his last outing over seven furlongs, just over a length behind the victor. He drops in trip, but did finish second over this distance in his penultimate start, so this should not be an issue. He gets the blinkers re-fitted for today’s run and should be included in all bets.
The day’s best bet, MARANOA has only had the two runs to date, winning over seven furlongs on debut and then finishing second next time out over 1500M, beaten a short-head. He jumped awkwardly that day, but recovered well to dash to the head of affairs, before battling all the way down to the wire, only to be denied victory in the shadow of the post. He gets a handy draw three and should relish the extra ground on offer here.
BLACK DUKE has finished closer to the winner in his last three starts, the latest when third over seven furlongs, beaten just under a length and a half. That was however in a Group 3 event and he did suffer severe interference at the 75M pole that day. His subsequent objection against the winner was overruled and he looks to be the immediate danger to the top choice, having cracked pole position.
ISLAND BAY BOY goes for his hat-trick of victories having won over 1300M and the latest over seven furlongs by just under two lengths at this track. He faces draw ten, but he should be involved in the finish.
This looks to be a tricky race and some caution is advised. SPIRIT RIDGE finished eleventh in his last outing over sixteen furlongs, 10.3L adrift of the winner, but that was in a Group 1 event and he had to be steadied at the 2600M pole, before not getting the clearest of passages in the home straight. He faces gate eight, but the blinkers go back on for today’s run and he should be right up there when they hit the line.
YONKERS settled just behind the leader before putting 4.8L between himself and the opposition when winning his last start over ten furlongs. He struck the front at the 250M mark that day and that was the last they saw of him. He has a wide draw fifteen, but he should use that early gate speed to move across into a hand position without expending too much energy.
MR MARATHON MAN followed up his penultimate run victory over ten furlongs with a seventh-place finish next time out when dropping down to seven furlongs. He jumped awkwardly that day and then came the widest into the straight before finishing well over the latter stages of the race. From gate six, he should enjoy going back in distance and should keep the top two picks honest.
MONTEREY ZAR has only had the four runs to date, posting a win, two seconds and a third-place finish when making his debut over this trip. He finished a half-length second in his latest outing over this c&d, a half-length back from the winner. and has won a subsequent barrier trial since then. He has pulled pole position and seems likely to turn in another honest performance today. Although
VERDI is recorded as finishing fifth last time out over 1300M, he was only 1.8L behind the winner. That was in a Class 1 event where he tried to go from jump to wire and the form of that race has been franked with five horses from that field subsequently winning. He will have to overcome gate ten, but given his front-running style of racing, this may not be a big issue. He returns from a 32-week break, but has turned in an encouraging barrier trial to showcase his well-being.
NAMIMO is a 4yr old filly taking on males and has her fist run since an even longer 35-week absence, but she won her only barrier trial to prove her fitness. She lost ground turning into the home stretch before closing in on the leaders over the latter stages to end up in seventh spot last time out over six furlongs, just over four lengths adrift of the victor. She gets gate seven and should give the boys a good run for their money.