WITH champion jockey Tony Cruz having a fistful of good rides today, arch rival Basil Marcus will be mustard keen to snatch a winner where he can and Gold Capture could be just the one to oblige, writes Robin Parke.
Gold Capture has put in a number of staggering performances, coming from the rear of the field to swoop round and run on for a third or second placing. Invariably, he has been apprentice-ridden with top senior jockeys only rarely seen on the Peter Ng Bik-kuen stayer. Late last season Gold Concept was ridden by Steven King over today's trip of 2,000 metres, but after a season without a real break the English import was over the top and the run can be discounted.
Gold Capture has had one outing this season and that was another solid effort where he came from near last to snatch second spot behind E Treasure in a 1,800-metre event. The six-year-old has a few things going for him today, most notably the added distance, the likelihood of some cut in the ground and the admirable Marcus. Gold Capture has never seemed to be an ideal ride for an apprentice as he is a tardy type who takes plenty of time to get into the swing of things with the result that, invariably, he is sent wide to make his final run. Those tactics may in most cases have been inevitable, but they are also costly in terms of winning races and it is unlikely that Marcus will be quite so extravagant today.
The horse may not respond to having his ears ridden off in an attempt to push him on to the pace and Marcus is an astute judge who can still get him into a reasonable position without resorting to hell-for-leather tactics. It is also worth noting that this company is slightly weaker than that Gold Capture was keeping for much of last season.
Given his three-quarters of a length third to E Treasure and the engagement of Marcus, it must be confidently expected that Gold Capture will again take a major hand in the finish.
Trainer Peter Tse Yan-sid has not had a lot of luck on a couple of occasions this season and will be hoping for a top run from Financial Fortune. He has again engaged seven-pound claimer Peter Y. S. Wong and those prepared to take the chance should get a reasonable quinella price out of this combination. Lurking at the bottom of the weight scale is Champion Mascot, trained by David Hayes, and he is an each-way chance. Champion Mascot rattled home last time out over 1,600 metres from an impossible position and can go close. He, too, has won over this journey in the past.