Marcus good value for TT opening leg

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 November, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 November, 1998, 12:00am

Last season's champion jockey, Basil Marcus, is a strong candidate for inclusion in the opening leg of tomorrow's Sha Tin Triple Trio.

His South African compatriot, Douglas Whyte, was to have partnered the Derek Cruz-trained Regent's Star and would also have been a strong contender. However, after yesterday withdrawing his appeal against a five-day ban, he is out of the picture and a replacement rider for Regent's Star has not yet been named.

Marcus rides Eternity for his old boss Lam Hung-fie (how their fortunes have diverged in the intervening eight years).

Eternity shaped promisingly on his reappearance and seems to have worked strongly for this third event, a Class Six contest over 1,800 metres.

The trip, the company and the jockey look ideal for him.

Of the others, Toy Baron would surely have been placed last time but for meeting considerable interference. He might even have won and he's another who should go close.

Power Rangers' last run is best forgotten as he pitched on to his nose at the start and ended up out the back in one of those desperate dirt nights where it was virtually impossible to make ground.

He's pretty competitive in this grade and could be at good odds as the general public may overreact to that seemingly bad run on the dirt.

Alleged Runner, Piece of Cake, Planet II and Room For More are others with definite tierce claims in a tricky opening leg to the TT.

American Heart could be the best banker in the fourth event which, as usual, acts as the TT's middle pin.

The Andy Leung-trained youngster is improving all the time and can be expected to progress from his last-start third place.

Generally, the Leung stable is now in form, especially with these less experienced types.

Fortune Dancer's winning form has taken a knock with the subsequent defeats of second, third and fourth, Goods News, Dolbridge and Brilliant Leader.

But none has been beaten by far - indeed they've run third, fourth and fourth - and Fortune Dancer could place.

The in-form performers, Classic Boy and Race To Honour, merit tierce respect as, too, does Nanning Treasure, who should stay the mile.

Kewins was well ridden to win last time and may find this harder.

Danish Heights is potentially well handicapped and showed he was on the way back when a creditable fourth last time.

Seven Glory, Starlight Express and Sensible Choice could be the three to take against the field in the sixth event, which concludes the TT.

Seven Glory appears to have thrived since moving to Geoff Lane, going very well in a recent trial.

Starlight Express has always worked and raced as if this 2,000-metre trip would see him race to full potential.

Sensible Choice might well have beaten Team Honour with a clear run last time. He stays well and is down to a very competitive mark.

Of the others, don't give up on God Of Wealth, who probably needed the outing last time while Ho Ho is clearly a promising youngster, though this is harder.

Super Goal could get the run of the race up on the speed as he and Good Fortune look the leaders from the inside barriers.