The John Higgins Memorial Final (2130m) highlights an action-packed 10-event card at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The Group 3 $30,000 feature brings together a full field of 12 talented pacers with many genuine winning chances.
Members of the WA Trotting Media Guild have wisely dodged the Higgins when attempting to find a best bet.
Longshot guru Pat Harding believes punters can kick the night off in grand style by supporting Taking The Miki in the opening event.
“A pretty tough night for tipsters and punters alike last Friday at GP and with rain around this could be another one of those nights,” Harding said.
“My best bet comes up in race one with No. 6 Taking The Miki. Her form before a spell was consistent and should provide a good win first-up for the Ross Olivieri/Chris Voak combination.”
TABradio’s Hayden King won’t hear of Eighteen Carat being beaten in the second.
“Eighteen Carat will lead and win the second race,” King confidently predicted. “Enough said.”
Veteran journalist Ken Casellas and The West Australian’s Ernie Manning are confident that Typhoon Banner can get the job done in race four.
“Dazzling gate speed is Typhoon Banner’s greatest asset, and I’m making the Dylan Egerton-Green trained and driven five-year-old my best bet this week,” Casellas said. “He should set the pace from barrier three in race four and prove too strong for his rivals.”
And Manning agrees.
“Typhoon Banner has emerged as a quality pacer in wins at four of his past seven starts and gate three gives him the chance to score another victory,” Manning said. “He faced a difficult task from barrier seven when unplaced at his last start, two weeks ago. The gelding, trained and driven by Dylan Egerton-Green, recently notched a hat-trick of Gloucester Park victories, boosting his tally to eight wins at headquarters.”
Media Guild president Wayne Currall is keen on Chicago Bull in race six.
“The Little Bull won’t be at any fancy price but I believe he can post an all-the-way victory here,” Currall said.
“He just got rolled by Magnificent Storm a fortnight ago and he can end a losing sequence of nine on Friday night. He looks a banker for the second leg of the main quaddie and for all-up investments. Get on.”
The standing-start event has pitted The West Australian’s racing co-ordinator Ryan Havercroft and TABradio’s Matt Young against each other.
“Himself hasn’t set a hoof wrong since arriving from New Zealand and will look to break his metropolitan maiden status at career start 14,” Havercroft said. “Two safe beginnings and victories from behind the strands in as many weeks suggest he is an above-average talent.”
But Young doesn’t see the race panning out that way.
“Cooper in the stand has good ability and can step well,” Young said. “He is a versatile type and I think he can start off a winning account in the metro area.”
PAT: My double comes up in race three with No. 2 Rupert Of Lincoln. He has been knocking on the door and is well overdue for a win.
HAYDEN: Elsamay hasn’t had the best of luck recently in similar races and gets an opportunity to shine on Friday. This will determine if she is up to the city-class fillies, which I think she is.
KEN: For value, I suggest Elsamay, who is a model of consistency for Bunbury trainer John Graham. She should be prominent from the No. 3 barrier and should fight out the finish of the first event.
ERNIE: Veteran gelding Free To Air is on a 40-start losing streak and has been unplaced in his past 12 races. But the 10-year-old ran on stylishly when fourth last Friday night, at his 203rd start, and could be close to his first win since 2020.
WAYNE: Euphoric Moment seems to always go around at an each-way quote and Friday night will be no different. If he can latch onto the coat tails of likely leader Pocket The Cash, then he’s in this race up to his eyeballs.
RYAN: The strong form lines in the John Higgins Final sees many capable pacers starting at backable quotes. Vulcan Star is third-up from an awkward draw and likely to be at a liberal each-way price.
MATT: Texas Tara strikes a winnable race. It’s an open event and the gelding has a strong chance at odds.
Click here to view all of the Media Guild tips for this week.
Good punting and remember it’s an early start because of the footy across the road.