Ripper poised to repay faithful
By ROBIN PARKE
STRONGLY supported I'm A Ripper failed to justify the confidence of his backers last time out, but could atone in the second leg of the Double Trio at Happy Valley tonight.
This is the penultimate meeting at the city track as it has been known for the past half century, but punters seeking DT rewards are not likely to be interested in history.
The form book tends to support the suggestion of I'm A Ripper as a banker for the second leg which is a weak Class Five event over 1,650 metres.
The reclassified griffin had clearly been coming to himself for trainer Lawrie Fownes before his past couple of runs and support for the gelding last time, when he ended up 5-1 favourite in a 1,400-metre Sha Tin race won by Make Merry, was not unexpected.
I'm A Ripper was not entirely disgraced in running sixth and did not have a great deal of luck in transit. Prior to that run, he had finished fourth over 1,400 metres doing his best work at the line.
This 1,650-metre event is ordinary and the Fownes-trained galloper can finish in the first three. He should be suited by the extra distance.
It may pay to watch out for topweight Magnum Thirtythree, trained by John Moore and ridden by Tony Cruz. This pair are having great success at the moment.
The American-bred youngster has unquestionably been a disappointment. In his griffin year big things were expected, but Magnum Thirtythree did not deliver. He ran one decent race earlier this season and then finished a length and three quarters from Sky Horse last time out over a Sha Tin mile.
He now finds himself at the top end of Class Five, admittedly carrying 140 pounds, but on his last run in tougher company he merits serious consideration.
Given the dearth of chances in the race, he should be included along with the Walter Swinburn-ridden Lucky Treasure and the disappointing Mannidear who could do something for Darryll Holland.
Light Sensation has had innumerable chances, but remains a maiden. He may reach the frame.
Topweight Everbright, with Cruz riding for old pal Eddie K. C. Lo, looks the logical banker for the first leg of the DT.
He will run out the 2,230-metre trip of this combined Classes Five and Six race and looks in good heart at the moment. He carries 140 pounds, but has much more ability than three-quarters of this field and has lumped weight successfully before.
Everbright can definitely be beaten, but it is difficult not to see him running in the first three in this 12-runner event.
Winning Stallion has not been fitter this season and has given recent indications that real improvement is likely to be seen.
Local rider Rambo Tse Wai-ho is aboard tonight and I expect Winning Stallion to be involved.