Super Form shocked punters early in the season but hasn’t drawn a barrier since and a kinder draw can help the Tony Millard-trained gelding in the Class Four Saturn Handicap on Thursday night at Happy Valley.
At the first Valley meeting of the term, Super Form scored at 93-1 over 1,650m, doing it in a manner that suggested he would win again as well.
In three starts over 1,800m since, Super Form has drawn 11, 13, and 10 and been taken back to near the tail each time.
A flat run at Sha Tin two starts ago was a little disappointing but Super Form clearly favours the softer city track and last start closed off nicely for third behind Pearl Furu.
With Chad Schofield suspended through December, leading jockey Joao Moreira has seized the chance to ride Super Form in what looks a very weak race and barrier four seems ideal.
Expect a positive ride from Moreira with the horse coming back to 1,650m for the first time since that last win, with Super Form to be placed a little closer.
The Magic Man also partnered the horse in a nice piece of work last Tuesday, with the gelding lengthening stride in an impressive manner on the dirt.
In fact, Moreira has been granted good draws on a number of rides; another Millard-trained runner Speedy Achiever jumps from four in the second section of the 1,200m Class Four and Paul O’Sullivan’s Never Better drew the same gate in the first section, while late in the night John Moore’s sprinter Green Card jumps from one.
One ride that Moreira did not get that, and another that has drawn a gate, was John Size-trained Works Of Art – with the trainer sticking with local rider Vincent Ho Chak-yiu.
Ho rode a nice race when successful on Works Of Art two starts back, before Florent Geroux drew the ride in the Longines International Jockeys’ Championship.
Works Of Art was set a near-impossible task after Geroux was left posted three deep and was still near last after turning, but despite the horrid run the four-year-old charged home to dead-heat for third.
From barrier two, Ho should be able to place Works Of Art more prominently on the “C + 3” course and will probably start a pronounced favourite here.
In the 2,200m Class Three Mars Handicap it is hard to go past the David Hall-trained Victory Boys, with the five-year-old having struck a rich vein of form at the Valley.
In his last six starts, Victory Boys has won three and finished second three times, chasing home progressive-looking prospect Dinozzo over 1,800m last time out.
A step up to 2,200m doesn’t look a problem for a horse that travels kindly in his races and from barrier one he can be close enough to take advantage of whatever pace scenario unfolds.
With three turns and a high possibility of mid-race moves, tactics in 2,200m races can be hard to predict, but Brett Prebble, who has been aboard for all three of Victory Boys’ wins, is up there with the best of them when it comes to reading a race.
Sitting up closer to the speed in the early stages will be Size’s four-year-old Australian import Prawn Baba (Zac Purton), after finishing second at his first two local starts, and he looks a solid double banker to pair with Victory Boys in the final leg of the Triple Trio.
Purton will be hoping for an even tempo and could even elect to lead and try to control the race, with the Tony Cruz-trained Jolly Gene (Matthew Chadwick) the only other leader in the race.