Welcome to our harness racing preview and betting tips for Gloucester Park on Friday, August 16th.
Trent Orwin has run his eye over the meeting and selected his best bets below!
The speed map looks simple with the Gary Hall Snr-trained (1) Mad Robber surrendering the lead to stablemate (2) King Of Swing. Going back about fourth months ago, there was talk that King Of Swing could beat Chicago Bull. That didn’t occur and the much-hyped pacer has hit a roadblock with a losing sequence of seven. That should end in this race by leading all-the-way. Mad Robber looks a big chance to run second. (10) The Midas Touch and (11) Speed Man are the likely candidates to fill third place and I’m happy to play exotics around that occurring due to King Of Swing opening $1.30 in the early market.
Lots of gate speed for this 1730m contest and the first quarter could be quick if three or four horses chance their luck at the start. (8) The War Nurse is the quickest beginner on the front line but my top selection, (6) Major Pocket, can also show gate speed. Based on recent form, I think Major Pocket deserves to be favourite, which he currently is, and he should go close to going one better after three-consecutive seconds. Major Pocket has chased home Our Corelli, Simba Bromac and Major Trojan at his past three starts – all three would be favourites in this race. (5) Carter Micheal looks a big danger and he has drawn directly inside Major Pocket.
The leader should be (1) Whoswhointhezoo unless (8) Son Of A Tiger is urged off the gate in a bid to try and spear across to find the lead. I’m not sure if that horse can cross but it is the one that could potentially do it. Whoswhointhezoo is prepared by Karen Thompson and will be driven by Aiden De Campo. His recent form is excellent without winning; that can be a concern because he may pull up in the straight and allow another horse to run past him. I am banking on the race being more suitable than recent assignments and his sectional times read very well. The other horse that I like is (11) Illusionation for trainer Reg Phillips. He has won two of his last six and been runner up in a further two. Big odds and can run a cheeky race from barrier 11. (3) Pradas Ideal Dahling is a strong chance but even-money is too short for this horse.
One of the features tonight is the Listed August Cup over the longer distance. We get to see WA’s most in-form trainer Debra Lewis with race favourite (1) Our Corelli who looks extremely hard to beat from the inside draw. He looks the leader and prior to two unplaced runs, he had won five in a row. Three starts ago he claimed an FFA in 1:55.2 defeating Major Pocket and Herrick Roosevelt. This is a stronger field, but the horse is in super condition and will be driven by the master, A C Lewis. We see the return of (4) The Bucket List who found form towards the end of his last preparation. Fitness will be a concern but on raw figures, he would be second pick from the draw. (10) Our Jimmy Johnstone, (11) Whozideawasthis and (12) Herrick Roosevelt are key place chances. I don’t like the wide draws for (7) Vampiro or (8) El Jacko.
The Group 3 feature should see (1) Amelias Courage lead from the inside barrier. She can mix her form which can make her hard to follow at times. Her absolute best form will be too good here. Four-straight defeats by more than 10m isn’t ideal leading into a feature race and happy to pass on her at around the even-money mark. (6) Cut Above interests me after racing well in standing-start company. She has won or been placed at her past seven starts; two of them were mobiles and the last five have been in stands. Three starts ago she defeated Space Junk over 2503m. She is a big price here and happy to support each-way. Too many chances to name so let’s hope Shannon Suvaljko can drive Cut Above a treat to give the mare her best chance of success.
This looks a great race for (3) Convert Denario who drops back from FFA grade. He led and ran a narrow second to Handsandwheels in 1:55.6. Prior to that, he showed excellent gate speed to led from barrier four and win the Group 3 John Higgins Memorial Final (2130m) in 1:54.9. Convert Denario is a $1.10 chance if he finds the lead, but he can still obtain cover on the back of (6) Bettor Reward and could prove too quick, although that brings Bettor Reward right into the race. (2) Infinite Symbol will need to lead in order to be a winning chance. She is probably a class below Convert Denario but sometimes speed map wins over class so it could be an entertaining contest. (4) Bechers Brook hasn’t impressed at his past two but his best form is good enough.
A competitive stand will be the final leg of the Quaddie and leading is the best place to be around Gloucester Park. (1) Atmospherical will get his chance to do that from barrier one if he can step cleanly. Last start he was second when beaten 1.5m by (9) Eloquent Mach who goes back 10m. The extra handicap will give Atmospherical a chance to turn the tables, although the extra distance may negate it. Seven starts ago, Atmospherical led over course and distance when finishing second to Caviar Star. (3) The Dali Express was costly two starts ago when galloping. (6) One Off Delight is right in the mix for the new stable after he captured the Group 2 San Simeon (2130m) last start.
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