At first glance Race 5 at Fairview today appears competitive, but under the race conditions one horse stands out above the others.
Sir Duke is named after a song composed by Stevie Wonder about Duke Ellington – who was a legendary jazz pianist and bandleader. In similar fashion, the Tara Laing-trained runner could lead the field home in this Pinnacle Stakes over 1300m.
He is the best handicapped runner by at least 2kg. He is also unbeaten in three starts over the course and distance and other than his last run, when finishing at the back of the field, he’s done little wrong. That run is best ignored.
Another factor in his favour is that Raymond Danielson is in the irons. He has steered the son of Trippi to victory five times, two of which were over this course and distance.
Afrikaburn has shown immense improvement over the last two runs. He should be a force to be reckoned with and will hopefully soon return to winning ways. Granted, the last time he won was in 2014 – but it’s important to keep in mind that this is a horse who has run against the likes of Futura, Saratoga Dancer and even Legal Eagle and performed relatively well.
The Justin Snaith-trained Mesmerise ran great in last outing. Money came in for stable companion Land Of Meadows but it was Mesmerise who stepped up, running extremely well to finish second behind Cardinal. Expect another big run today.
The card features a number of tricky races. However, if there are any questions as to who will win Race 2, the name on most people’s lips will be Velvet Orchid. She will be in pursuit of her fifth consecutive win and might prove to be the best bet of the day.