Intermac can call tune from the front
By TONY HARBIDGE
INTERMAC Supreme (Nap) benefited from new front-running tactics when making all under Danny Lee to score really easily on his reappearance at Sha Tin and a similar tactics could well see him prevail again this evening.
That defeat of Determinater was on a speed-par with his best effort of last season and, according to the speed ratings, a reproduction of it would be more than enough to see him home tonight.
So often to lead is a big advantage on the equitrack and there are few better exponents of riding from the front, expatriate or local, than Lee.
I like the look of Alex Wong Siu-tan's Valiant Red for the quinella. He has produced some very good speed figures on the artificial surface, relative to the quality of opposition he faces this evening.
He also won very strongly last time out for Jeff Lloyd and now has a fair 10-pound claimer on board in Eddie Lai.
Lai may not be in the same quality as Francis K.S. Lam but he is certainly worth taking a chance on with 10 pounds coming from the back of his mounts.
Valiant Red has had his problems over the last couple of seasons with cracked hooves making him very hard to train - even for a handler of Wong Siu-tan's experience and skill with these staying types.
But Wong Siu-tan has finally won the battle of the hooves and got him right for the first time in quite a while.
This means that he is fitter than at any time for a good few races and it would be a really popular success as he is owned by new Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club chairman John Swaine who is a great supporter of racing and an asset to the game.
Later on the programme I'm sweet on the chances of Heza Star making it back-to-back victories following his recent win at Sha Tin.
That victory was not really expected - given the price he started. Now he is back on his favourite equitrack surface, racing over his favourite trip and with Tony Cruz opting to stay on board rather than ride King's Flair for Geoff Lane.
That looks to be a tip in itself and one worth heeding given that Heza Star comes out really well on my speed ratings.
Punters' pal Ivan Allan can take out the final event with Turf Champ whom I fancy to make all the running.