Need You Now looms as major factor in Premier Mares Championship
Group racing returns to Addington Raceway this evening, with the Garrards Premier Mares Championship the feature event on the night. Diamond Racing are represented by Need You Now and Spellbound, with the former the biggest threat to favourite Amazing Dream after securing a perfect inside draw.
After a narrow defeat behind subsequent Auckland Cup winner Amazing Dream on Cup Day, Need You Now had no joy in her following two starts, before heading for a well-earned break. She resumed at Addington last Friday evening and produced the eye-catching run of the race, storming into second behind Enchantee, after being a mile behind that mare turning in.
This week she is perfectly drawn coming out of barrier two as she again tries to lower the colours of the champion mare Amazing Dream. With her high gatespeed, it is inevitable that Need You Now will lead early, giving John options. While she should be able to dictate the tempo of the race, she is sure to be looked at by the Hayden Cullen trained mare at some stage. A titanic battle between the pair over the concluding stages seems likely, similar to that staged on cup day. While a lot will depend on how much work Amazing Dream is forced to do in the running, the Woodlands Partnership No 3 syndicate will get a great run from Need You Now which will never go down without a fight.
We also have Spellbound that will go around from barrier nine. The good mare that she is, Spellbound and driver Tim Williams will need to conjure up all means of good luck after having drawn the carpark. If she were to get a run into it on the back of the right runner, she could not be discounted for the thin end of first fours.
The night starts for us in Race Two with The Player. He meets an evenly balanced field and is in a good run of form, but will need to overcome barrier nine, from the mobile gate. Providing John is able to find an ok sit early, he is sure to be running on and is always a chance to get a slice of it.
Ned Kelly is our runner in Race Three. After running two superb races at Nelson, he was well off his game last time out. He is drawn to do no work this evening, having landed the back of one of the favourites Duffy Hollow drawn in barrier one. If the real Ned Kelly was to turn up tonight, then he is a definite eachway prospect.
Mataderos has been in super form since joining the stable from Australia and with Pres Da Belle forms a great two-pronged attack in Race Four. While it is his first start at Addington tonight, so dominant has he been in many of his winning runs, it would be hard to see Mataderos not copping the track. For that reason alone, he is likely to start a short-priced favourite. Pres Da Belle was much better last week after leading up and does tend to run well at this time of the year. Providing she can step the back mark well this evening, then she is at least a place hope in the race.
We again have two well favoured runners that will go around in Race Five. From barrier one, Shanika will likely start favourite. Her last start before a spell, she was a game second behind the talented La Rosa and she has been a workout winner since. Everything points to her being the toughest to beat. High Flying Harry has put in good runs his last two and should get a nice suck through from his second line draw. He is a definite place hope on his recent runs.
Off N Gone is a filly on the rise and has drawn well for Tim Williams in Race Six. She was in scintillating form at Nelson, winning both days, but meets a couple of smart customers in Cranbourne and Laver in Race Six. From the draw she should find a nice sport early and looks the biggest danger to the two favourites.
Yuri will look to turn his form around in Race Eight. A stylish winner first up from a spell, mistakes have been costly since. In what is another even line-up, he will only need to step and put himself in the race to be competitive.
The final two runners for the night are Anamajor and Passion And Power in Race Ten. Anamajor has been consistent as ever and if she can overcome the wide draw, is at least a place hope again. While she has been out of form, there is no disputing the class of Passion And Power. She should appreciate getting away from the better mares company and if she can get the right run from the second line, it would be no surprise to see her back in the winners circle.
Posted: Fri 29 Jan 2021