Lucky gate one is the way to go
It's not a jockey or trainer that punters should follow at Happy Valley tonight but rather a barrier, gate one, which looks set to add to its already-impressive statistics when the rail is in the 'C' position.
Barrier one could literally win all of the eight races and on last night's 6pm tote call, the longest priced horse to start from the coveted alley was Douglas Whyte's mount That's It ($73) in the fourth event.
The stall one inmates in each of the other seven races are even more strongly in commission, most notably Tiger Prawn ($20), the shortest-priced favourite on the programme in race three.
Barriers are important at any time at Happy Valley but become increasingly significant as the movable rail goes out from its true (A) position.
In the 'C' placement (ie, eight metres out from true), barrier one is clearly the most successful of the 12 gates at the 1,650 metres start, achieving 14 per cent wins, 25 per cent quinella and 40 per cent in the first three.
The impact of the barriers at this distance is such that 67 per cent of the winners in an 88 race sample have drawn in the first six alleys.
It becomes even more noticeable at 1,200 metres on the C rail placement, where 56 per cent of the winners come from gates one, two or three, and 82 per cent of the winners come from the first six alleys.
The full list of horses drawn gate one tonight are:
G-One Leading (Felix Coetzee) $39; Flame Power (Olivier Doleuze) $36; Tiger Prawn (Coetzee) $20; That's It (Whyte) $73; Lucky Fruit (Whyte) $29; Windicator (Whyte) $21; Survey Survey (Vincent Sit) $46; and Eye Witness (Coetzee) $48.
Whyte will undoubtedly be a lynchpin for Triple Trio players, having drawn the inside gate in each of the three legs (race four, five and six).
That's It has been racing well on the all-weather surface over 1,200m and will appreciate being stretched out to 1,650m at the city venue.
Lucky Fruit has improved significantly in his trackwork and was a strong tip around town last night, while impressive last-start winner Windicator ran sensational time in scoring first-up and only has to run up to that to be winning again.