Maximizer was an impressive winner of his second and third starts so it came as no surprise that he had his supporters in his third run, even though he was taking quite a jump in class.
Sadly for his supporters the three-year-old son of Querari let them down when finishing fifth behind Street Flyer. On closer scrutiny it was not such a bad performance as there were excuses. He was bumped, shifted around and made a respiratory noise but was only beaten 3.10 lengths.
It is interesting that all four his runs have been over 1400m at the Vaal and his fifth is also up the Vaal straight but over the unusual distance of 1475m. He lines in Race 3 tomorrow, a MR 79 Handicap, on the Inside track. The field is marginally weaker than his last start as the average merit rating is four points lower. Most importantly, Paul Peter’s charge is reunited with apprentice Lyle Hewitson who rode him in both of his wins.
This is still quite a competitive race and horses like Cherokee Grey, Danza and Golden Man will not make life easy for Maximizer in that they all have performed well at this course. Cherokee Grey makes the most appeal of these as he has run six times at the course for two wins, two seconds and a fourth. In his penultimate run Cherokee Grey was touched off by Golden Man but he is now 1kg better off for that head defeat and is expected to reverse the placings.
Alec Laird’s charge runs well for apprentice Calvin Ngcobo who takes the ride again.
Stable companion Danza has the services of Weichong Marwing in the irons but one has to go back 448 days to find his last win.
His merit rating has been dropping but not at a particularly fast rate so despite the fact that he rarely finishes far behind the winner he might need to come down a bit more before he wins. Nevertheless, if things go his way he must be in with a winning chance.
Trainer Stephen Moffatt tried blinkers on Rebuked last time but his charge ran a shocker, finishing 15 lengths behind Kapellmeister. What it did succeed in doing is getting him another three points off his merit rating and with the blinkers left in the stable one can expect an improved run.