A perfect example is Stars And Stripes, who looked like he was going nowhere until he was introduced to the Polytrack. This son of National Emblem began his racing career in the Western Cape where he did very little. In November last year Stars And Stripes was introduced to the Polytrack.
To be fair, his form had improved since he and jockey Raymond Danielson started to team up but the “Poly” was just what he needed to give him some confidence. He won first time out on the new track, and then had two more wins on the turf.
Those were followed by a good second placing behind Benedict on the Polytrack and two ordinary turf efforts. But it was on the Polytrack where this five-year-old has performed best and he notched up another two victories in his last two starts on that surface.
Stars And Stripes returns to his favourite track on today to contest a Pinnacle Stakes over 1000m. On paper he is not that well weighted and would be getting 5kg more from the likes of Yoshie had this been a handicap. But at this stage the handicappers have not set up separate merit ratings for the two surfaces so that might not mean too much. He is well enough drawn at No 6 and will again be ridden by Danielson.
Forest Fighter won his only start at this course with ease and could follow up. Tetelestai is very quick but will need to overcome No 12 draw while filly Yoshie takes on open company and might prefer a little further.