Prospects for Thursday’s Vaal race meeting appear in stark contrast to last week’s fixture at the venue – when five tote favourites won and trimmed the Pick 6 pay out to an emaciated R615.
Lots of happy punters collected that day, which is as it should be. But that’s unlikely to be repeated this week with every race a headache for students of form and a strong possibility of bombs dropping.
In such situations it’s often wise to keep exotic bet spending modest and redirect resources to the likes of Place and Quartet wagers. Also, relying on in-form stables can help punters negotiate the card – with some adroit nip and tuck.
Trainer Paul Peter has had his winning production line rolling, churning out 16 winners in the last 28 days – at a rate of 24% to number of runners.
Few of his runners can be ignored on Thursday and at least a couple could keep the wolves at bay.
Peter might start the roll in Race 1, in which he saddles Dronfield, an interestingly bred colt who returns to racing after a 203-day break following a promising career start.
Early money for La Banquiere in Race 2 suggests the filly, recently relocated from Cape Town, is working well ahead of her Highveld debut for Peter.
Another stable mate coming off a rest is Heavens Girl in the third. She has Classic potential and Peter will want her tested in this FM94 Handicap, so a progressive run is to be expected.
Sergei has been backed into favouritism in his last two starts and connections will be seeking some payback when he runs in Race 7, an MR72 Handicap. It won’t be easy for him, though, as the field is bristling with good form.
Like all the races before it, the ninth and last is a head-scratcher. But Peter’s Quality Joker might emerge from the well-shuffled pack.
1: 2 The Hound, 6 Dronfield, 1 Lulu’s Boy, 5 Astrocyte
2: 1 La Banquiere, 3 Queen Theodora, 6 Dancing Dora, 4 Miss United States
3: 1 Heavens Girl, 7 Alula’s Star, 2 Lucy In The Sky, 3 Dubawi’s Princess
4: 15 Samoa, 3 Stolen Kisses, 4 Midnight Gem, 6 Waya Yire
5: 3 Bowie, 7 Nordic Rebel, 8 Noble Striker, 6 Rock Of Africa
6: 2 Power Ranger, 4 My Master, 7 Zeus, 1 Bey Suyay
7: 7 Sergei, 4 Waqaas, 5 Two Fools Collide, 6 Global Player
8: 5 Platinum Sky, 6 Humble Tune, 12 Monsoon Kenny, 4 Afraad
9: 7 Quality Joker, 11 Groomedtowin, 4 Zoffany’s Girl, 5 Touched By Stars
Pick 6: 3,4,6,7,10,12,14,15 x 3,6,7,8,10 x 2,4 x 4,5,7 x 5,6,12 x 4,7,11 (R2160)
PA: 1 x 3,4,6,15 x 3,7 x 2,4 x 7 x 5,6 x 7 (R32)