WA Trotting Media Guild Friday's Thoughts 24th January
It’s a virtual smorgasbord for punters at Gloucester Park on Friday night with seven different best bets - two of them in the same race - from WA Trotting Media Guild members.
Guild president Wayne Currall gets the ball rolling in the opening event where his best for the night, Golden State, starts out in gate seven from the 2536m start.
“Golden State has had four runs back since a five-month spell and should be cherry ripe to deliver the goods,” Currall said. “He drops appreciably in class in this race and I’m hoping driver Michael Grantham uses the horse’s speed from the mobile to take up the early running. If Golden State finds the front his nine rivals will find it very hard to run him down.”
The West Australian’s Ernie Manning is keen on Crocodile Kid in race three.
“Crocodile Kid provides the rare example of a pacer that can be declared as best bet only one week after running last,” Manning said. “But he endured a tough run in the breeze last Friday night and now gate one has swung the odds back in his favour. A winner of 13 races, he deserves to break through for another victory after twice running second by a head at Gloucester Park in recent weeks.”
Next cab off the rank is TABradio’s Matt Young, who has opted for Mighty Santana in race four as his star bet.
“Mighty Santana has been racing very well and can do his fair share of work,” Young said. “I expect him to be too strong for his rivals.”
The Longshot King, Pat Harding, steps up to the plate next and the man who has won the Guild’s longest-priced winner competition for several years in a row, predicts pre-post favourite Ocean Ridge will take out the $50,000 The West Australian Nights of Thunder Final (1730m).
“On what should be a very competitive night of racing, my best bet comes up in the sixth race, the feature Nights of Thunder Final,” Harding said. “I think Ocean Ridge from barrier three is the one to follow. After an excellent win last week, I think he can give punters more joy and make it two in a row.”
Veteran journalist Ken Casellas, who this week penned a moving tribute to Joe Petricevich, 97, who passed away on the eve of the WA Pacing Cup, has come up with the aptly named Sameplace Sametime in the tribute race for the late trainer.
Not surprisingly, Mr Casellas - Kenny to his mates - gave a wink and a nod to the heavens when he nominated Sameplace Sametime as his star bet in the Vale Joe Petricevich Pace (2130m).
“There’s plenty of value at Gloucester Park on Friday night and I’m suggesting as my best bet Sameplace Sametime, a Kevin Charles-trained mare with a losing sequence of 15,” he said. “The five-year-old is sure to appreciate a favourable draw at No. 2 on the front line and she should be prominent throughout.”
But TABradio’s Hayden King took the losing-sequences theory to another level when he settled on Leftrightgoodnight as his best bet in the same race.
The Sonia Zucchiatti-trained 10-year-old gelding hasn’t saluted in more than 40 races, but that hasn’t deterred King.
“Leftrightgoodnight has really run into some form recently and he is drawn to secure a delicate run behind the leader,” King said. “Daylight is likely to come and he can outgun them late.”
The West Australian’s racing co-ordinator Ryan Havercroft rounds out the night with Howard Hughes as his best.
“Howard Hughes has impressed at two Pinjarra outings since arriving from New Zealand and appears a likely WA Derby candidate,” Havercroft said. “It is hard to see any of his rivals in this being able to stop his undefeated local record from continuing.“
WAYNE: Mister Ardee should get out to a juicy price in the fourth event. He’s been about the place of late and just needs a quick pace to rocket home.
ERNIE: Mandy Joan impressed when clearly winning a Byford trial last Sunday and looks capable of a big first-up run despite having drawn gate 12. The mare, who last raced in August, has won three Gloucester Park events.
MATT: Leftrightgoodnight has a beautiful draw and with an ounce of luck will have last crack at them. The old boy is capable of winning.
PAT: My value bet comes up in race nine the trotters event. I believe Spud coming out of barrier No.5 is long overdue for a win. He has been about the place in his last few races, but gets his chance to record a much-needed victory.
KEN: For value, I suggest Mandy Joan in the Im Themightyquinnfinal. The David Thompson-trained mare will be at juicy odds from the outside of the back line at her first appearance after a spell. She has impressed with convincing wins in Byford trials on the past two Sunday mornings.
HAYDEN: Im Full Of Excuses won't be too short and he is drawn to trail the leader in the FFA. He has proven formidable from this position before and he seems to be really hitting his straps recently. He will be hard to beat.
RYAN: You Gotta Have Faith has been thereabouts at recent outings and loves being out in front. The draw brings him right into calculations.