Get a head start with Felarof in TT chase
A mammoth HK$27.4 million jackpot is sure to stimulate a lucrative Triple Trio pool at Sha Tin tomorrow, where Felarof can kick things off as a banker in the opening leg.
It wouldn't be a surprise to see the TT go unclaimed again with two legs on the tricky all-weather track and a wide-open Class Three staying race to close proceedings, but at least the Tony Cruz-trained Felarof seems a reliable bet in a weak Class Four contest.
Felarof is no world-beater, he even dropped into Class Five for one start, but he has climbed his way out of the cellar grade with consistent performances, and faces a below-average group of Class Four horses.
While there might not be much ability in the mediocre field, one thing there will be plenty of is pace with Solar Boy, Fortune Bravo and Perfect Joy all likely to try and cross from the treacherous 1,650m starting point.
Felarof also has speed from the machine, but prefers to take a sit and from barrier seven, Matthew Chadwick can slot just behind the leading group. The tactic worked, albeit from a lower draw, when Chadwick box-seated on Felarof at the all-dirt meeting last month and scored a soft victory, not having to go around a horse as he railed up on the inside, winning stylishly.
Next time out, this time over 1,600m on the turf, Felarof was again given a luxury run but was left flat-footed when Winning Mascot, who had been left alone in front, bounced away.
Others to include are Elephant Magic (Andreas Suborics), Solar Boy (Ben So Tik-hung), and Fortune Bravo (Olivier Doleuze).
The middle pin is also on the dirt, a Class Four over 1,200m which looks just as tough to decipher, this time due to the number of course specialists engaged.
Drawing gate one is the Tony Millard-trained Gallant Mambo (Suborics), a last-start winner who has been given a month's break between runs and a soft barrier trial in preparation for this.
The three-year-old raced outside the lead and won easily at his first start on this surface, and he should be able to get the perfect box-seat run from gate one. With just four starts behind him, it is fair to expect improvement, and the draw makes him a stand-out banker.
O'Halo (Tye Angland) might just get the nod courtesy of drawing four, but he goes in just ahead of a group that save their best for the inner track. Angland might have his hands full after O'Halo was hard to handle at his last two starts, but if he can slot into the two-wide line and remain one or two back, he will be hard to beat.
Challengers include Oyster (Eddie Lai Wai-ming), Darpana (Zac Purton), Honey Fortune (Keith Yeung Ming-lun) and What A Heart (Alex Lai Hoi-wing).
The final event is a staying race with just 12 runners, at least half of whom have realistic claims.
Sunshine Day (Chadwick) comes off two straight wins and will be strongly supported and deserves a place as a banker.
The dangers are Real Generous (Weichong Marwing), Let's Goal (So) and Liberty Valance (Doleuze).