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Strata gets the ideal set-up in Race 1 at Hollywoodbets Durbanville over 1000m, having found six panels a stretch at her most recent tries. The speedy Canford Cliffs filly with decent Maiden form will attempt to go all the way.
From draw 3, she figures to obtain the run of the race, pacing it out with the well-exposed Ponte Vecchio early, though she will need to find extra to resist widely drawn, likely improver, Future Star’s closing bid.
Strata is trained by Candice Bass Robinson and ridden by Aldo Domeyer. A market watch is advised before committing, however. There are a couple of first timers, La Divina (Vercingetorix) and Bytheliteofthemoon (Gimmethegreenlight) sired by top stallions worthy of respect.
A pedigree check of Gravity in Race 2 enhances confidence. The Querari colt is out of Earth’s Orbit, a brilliant and speedy race-mare who loved the Durbanville bends. Gravity should also be able to race handy and kick on early down the favoured inside rail, having shown early pace at recent outings when supported.
Justin Snaith and Grant van Niekerk team up with Gravity, and they will try to stave off Connery (also bred to be a smart sprinter being by What a Winter ex Jo’s Bond), Head Girl, the erratic William West and likely 2nd start improver, Casino Ace.
The P6 looks particularly challenging. Punters keen to short select may gamble on three candidates in Race 6 – Diamond Rock, Naushon, and Red William. The former has steady Maiden form but cannot get too far back like last time. Likewise, Naushon seems overdue to shed his Maiden but should not give too much start. In contrast, Red William has the speed to get over from a wide gate and race upfront – preferred tactics at the country course. Apache Chief and Get Impressed are others to consider for wider perms.
Race 7 is a bewildering Class 4 over 1600m. Max the Otter has hidden form and may wake up at a price: enigmatic, deep closer, Tothemoonandback gets blinkers to aid his cause; Shavout is the lone speed and a threat to wire this field, while super-fit, Kimball O Hara should be dashing home late.
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