WA Trotting Media Guild Friday's Thoughts 9th June

TABradio race caller Matt McDermott was the man to follow with seven winners from last Friday night's card at Gloucester Park and the winners weren't all odds-on favourites. Among McDermott's seven winners were El Hombre at $5.70, Red Hot Major ($4.30) and Three Kings ($4.80).

The Media Guild members are divided on their best bets for Friday night's meeting at headquarters. McDermott, leading tipster Stuart Lowe and veteran harness racing media man Bill Brindley are keen on Mach Time in the second last race. "I think trainer Gary Hall can finish on a high with Mach Time the best bet of the night for mine," McDermott said. "I am using the theory that a short-priced winner is better than a long-priced loser." Lowe agrees with McDermott. "At Mach Time's only run this year he led and faded to finish ninth to Zach Maguire," Lowe said. "That was three weeks ago. Appears to drop in class here and with the advantage of barrier one should go close." Brindley is on the same page. "My best bet is Mach Time despite his drop off in form late in his last campaign," Brindley said. "His career form has been impressive and the talent of Hall Sr and Hall Jr plus the pole is the main factor."

TABform racing co-ordinator Ryan Havercroft, Sunday Times columnist Robbie Dewar and The West Australian's Ernie Manning have all labelled Jack Mac as their best bet in the Pearl Classic. "Jack Mac brought up a hat-trick of victories with his heat win and has an unblemished record since arriving in Australia," Havercroft said. "No runner has finished within six metres of the Barry Howlett-trained colt and he will be hard to beat."

Dewar agrees with Havercroft's thoughts on the race. "In his heat he galloped out losing valuable ground but was able to get himself together and win by two lengths," Dewar said. "He won a 2150m Pinjarra trial on Sunday going 2.02.3. Will be short but should be sweet."

Manning is a fan of Jack Mac as well. "Former Kiwi colt Jack Mac looks set to maintain his unbeaten WA record," Manning said. "He has improved sharply to win at each of his three starts after five unplaced runs in New Zealand."

King of the longshots Pat Harding has marked Natural Disaster down as his best bet. "Going to be a tough this Friday night but I fancy the Justin Prentice-trained Natural Disaster," Harding said. "Coming out of gate three, I think Prentice might bounce him to the front and outstay the rest over the sprint distance of 1730 metres."

Media Guild president Wayne Currall is at odds with Harding, selecting Chicago Bull in the same race as his star bet. "The little champ is back and despite lacking fitness and facing race-fit rivals over the sprint trip, I think his class will shine through," Currall said. He's opted for Forever Remembered as his best value for the night. "This mare has ran three cracking thirds since a spell and she'll appreciate the longer trip," Currall said. "I think she'll be each-way value." Harding and Currall again lock horns, with the former nominating Foxy Dame as his value selection. "I have a good feeling that the Mike Reed-trained Foxy Dame will give punters a good run on an each-way basis," Harding said.

Manning believes Bettor Twisted could provide value for punters. "Bettor Twisted was highly impressive when he won by 18.6m and rated 1:56.9 at Gloucester Park on Tuesday night," Manning said. "Now faces a class rise in the last, but he performed creditably by running fifth to Keeper Of Keys when racing in smart company last Friday."

Dewar has picked Zach Maguire as his next best on a star-studded card. "He is shooting for five wins from six starts this campaign and despite drawing awkwardly should be too good for his rivals," Dewar said.

Havercroft has gone with Heez On Fire to continue his winning run. "Comeback pacer Heez On Fire has been in sparkling form for Bill Horn and continues to impress with each run," Havercroft said. "Bill is spacing his runs beautifully and the son of Courage Under Fire is undefeated this campaign. Expect him to be storming home again."

Lowe likes Vanquished as his best value for the night. "Vanquished has been unplaced at his last four starts, but has had no luck in those races and still put in solid performances," Lowe said. "Comparatively well drawn here and looks an each-way chance."

Brindley likes Jambiani as his next best. "Jambiani is my other good bet after his great first-up win at Pinjarra," Brindley said. "Foxy Dame and Jack Mac appear other winners in a great night of pacing."

McDermott is sticking with the Hall camp to finish the night off with a win. "Ima Rocknroll Legend's win at Bunbury two starts ago was impressive," McDermott said. "He does meet some in-form pacers in Ace Bromac and Keeper Of Keys, but drawn gate nine I'm hoping there will be a bit of value there."

Good punting.