Last throw of the dice for Sires Stakes aspirants
Tonight is the fifth and final heat for those runners hoping to gain a start in the NRM Sires' Stakes to be held at Addington on Cup Day. There are three stable chances in the race, in the shape of Alta Maestro, Henry Hubert and The Brooklyn Brawler. In the case of Alta Maestro and Henry Hubert, the draws have panned out perfectly, while for The Brooklyn Brawler, he will be forced to work hard from the outside of the frontline.
Alta Maestro proved himself at the top level last season as a two year old and looms as the key runner from a stable point of view this evening. Drawn wide at his last start at Addington, driver Dexter Dunn had no choice but to pull back at the start. After taking inside runs inside the last lap, he finished well for 5th, beaten just over four lengths. What pleased Dexter on that occasion was how the colt really hit the line over the last 50m.
Drawn so well this evening, he will look to go forward and control the race. With some of the more favoured runners, including likely favourute Spankem drawn poorly, he will look to make their task that little bit harder.
Hnery Hubert is the most inexperienced of the Robert Dunn runners in the race, but has a great draw in barrier two. He will be handled by Gavin Smith tonight, a driver that has a real affinity with stable runners. He has done work in both races this campaign and has not shirked his task at the business end, despite some tough runs. In many respects he is a raw talent and if he can bring his A game to tonight's heat, don't go discounting his chances, particularly of finishing in the first three.
The Brooklyn Brawler also comes out of a previous Sires' Stakes heat at his last start. He was well back from a bad draw throughout, but hit the line with some real purpose in the run home to be finish sixth, beaten just over six lengths. He has put in three really good runs since resuming. His task tonight is more problematic though, given that he has drawn widest on the frontline. Driver John Dunn will need to be at his best to navigate the best path for his charge this evening.
In a race with a host of chances, All You Need Is Faith and Spankem look the two toughest for stable runners to get past.
There are ten other runners entered on tonight's card, kicking off with Mahksman in Race Two. He was good on debut at Methven in running third and went a good race on Labour Day at Ashburton in a much stronger line-up. He has drawn well and looks a great place chance in a race dominated on the tote by Funatthebeach.
Woodstone in Race Three, looked a handy sort last season as a three year old and is lightly raced. He had no luck first up at Ashburton and starts off the unruly tonight, so is looking for luck. If he gets any luck, look for him to be finishing strongly.
Lovetodream and American Tart look the two biggest threats to favourite Bonnie Joan in Race Four. Lovetodream has a string of placings to her name and deserves a win. American Tart resumes after a seven month break and has prepared well at the trials and workouts. If she is anywhere near the top of her game, she is sure to take some beating.
Foreverman in Race Five only went down in the very last stride at Kaikoura on Monday. Providing he has come through this run well, he looks an each-way hope in what appears a very even field.
Alta Orlando is another racing well, but comes up against some rockstars in Race Six. On his best form, he is a place hope if he gets the perfect run.
De Lancome was highly regarded last season as a two year old and resumes in Race Seven in a Sires Stakes heat for the fillies. Her trial runs have been pleasing and from a great draw, she must be a place hope.
Yagunnakissmeornot has disappointed in her two runs since coming South. A peak performance tonight would take her close.
The final stable runner is Spondulicks in Race Ten. He is ultra consistent, but does meet some very good horses here. He is probably best at the thin end of First Four combinations.
Posted: Fri 03 Nov 2017