Blinkers can do the trick for Fast Lane
Gelding has been running well without winning, but with the new headgear and speed to suit, he can get back on track in TT's middle leg
Few horses have been in better form lately without winning than Peter Ho Leung-trained The Fast Lane, but the five-year-old looks a key player in the middle leg of the Triple Trio on Monday, with a potential HK$10 million dividend to be won.
The fifth race is one of these odd Class Fours for Class Three horses - the advertised extended-ratings band of 65-40 is a nonsense, since the 14 declared runners are all rated between 59 and 64.
So it is almost a level weights Class Three for horses which haven't been winning this season and none in that category is going better than The Fast Lane (Richard Fourie).
Ho has added blinkers to the gelding and it might prove a crucial difference since the race contains few pacemakers, with Goldweaver, Lucky Warrior (Keith Yeung Ming-lun) and outsider Longwah Invincible all possible frontrunners but none a recognised regular in the role.
The Fast Lane's lack of tactical speed is what has held him back and the blinkers might help him to be a little sharper.
He looks the banker, and other must-include horses look to be Golden Gunners, consistent Finn Maccool (Olivier Doleuze), Super Tiger (Brett Prebble) coming in fresh, Lucky Warrior, whose last run was excellent after racing wide, Bright Star and Bomber Jet.
In the opening leg, finding a banker isn't easy although, on the plus side, there looks to be a long tail to the race of horses which can be left out.
Lightly-raced Telecom Prince has Zac Purton jumping on after the Dennis Yip Chor-hong-trained four-year-old produced nice efforts at his first three starts. He has closed out each of his assignments strongly and won't have to improve much to figure strongly in what is quite a weak race.
Once again, tempo appears a possible issue so runners like Approve (Prebble) and Dragon Pins (Yeung), who can race forward, are musts for TT players and Power Blitz was a much-improved effort when dropping into Class Four last time out.
Super Horse and Sure Champ were third and fourth respectively last time chasing home Little Men, and that looks sound form, and even Summer Dash is worth a place hope. He is unreliable but has run some good races recently and won't find many better opportunities to feature than this.
The anchor leg looks an open affair, however John Size-trained Young Warrior (Tye Angland) has done enough in his trials here and in New Zealand to suggest he can be yet another debutant from the yard to show up immediately.
The son of Falkirk hasn't been asked for a lot in his local trials but has been smooth and sensible and he was an easy trial winner in New Zealand when he was allowed to run.
That suggested he has his share of ability and gate one gives him a rail to follow for his first race.
He may even make a double banker proposition with Bobo Dragon (Purton), who has an awful draw in 14 but has raced well at both starts for seconds to Flying Ibis and Heartland. He has led and then run-on last start after a check at the start, so he is tactically versatile and Purton might offset that draw.
The Tony Millard-trained Speed Thunder's fifth on debut makes him one to include as he comes out of the straight race won by Sea Dragon, and the winner, second and fourth have all won since.
Jade Christy, who was third in that Sea Dragon race, is racing consistently and must be included again and so too Bullish Boy (Doleuze), Disciples Twelve, Meridian Star, Happy Ceramibo and Real Champion (Prebble).
Real Champion was well backed to win the Flying Ibis race and disappointed first-up, but his run behind Multiexpress was a sharp improvement on that and the backing might not have been misguided, only mistimed.
(2) Handsome Batchelor, (4) Follow The Money, (6) Spicy Siam, (9) King Of Wine.
(1) General Danroad, (2) Creative Union, (6) Gracytom, (14) Linked Win.
(2) Fulfil A Wish, (4) Straight Gold, (5) Go Baby Go, (6) Amber Sky.
(4) Summer Dash, (8) Super Horse, (13) Dragon Pins, (14) Sure Champ.
(1) Golden Scalpel, (5) Polymer Win, (8) Bomber Jet, (13) Longwah Invincible.
(1) Disciples Twelve, (4) Bobo Dragon, (7) Speed Thunder, (8) Young Warrior.
(1) Floral Man, (5) Super Lifeline, (6) Twin Turbo, (8) Principal.
(3) Galaxy Prancer, (7) King's Pact, (8) Turbo Jewellery, (11) Divine Diya.
(1) Ultimate Winners, (4) Master Sommelier, (5) Smart Volatility, (12) Exciting Dream.
(1) Wah May Star, (3) Outdoor Pegasus, (6) Victory Master, (14) Mac Row.