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Posted on - 18 Aug 2017

- By Cyrus Naterwalla
Race No. 1 :- The Rajasthan Royals Plate – Class IV – 3 years old only – Distance :- 1400M
TURNING POINT :-Well bred 3 year old from S.K. Sunderji’s yard who has raced twice till date. She made her debut over 6 furlongs back in March and made late headway to finish up 4th behind Lord Commander. She duly built on that next time out over 7 furlongs when well backed and scoring with aplomb, sparing 2 ½ lengths to Admo. She really seems to have come into her own of late as she has been tracking exceptionally well and also went a decent Mock Race so should be fit enough. She is conceding weight all around but looks a very strong contender with A. Imran Khan up and appears to be the most likely winner.
ORION’S BELT:-Trained by Narendra Lagad, this 3 year old Western Aristocrat filly has already had a bit of a chequered career in 3 runs till date. She made her debut back in February over 1000M and finished only 8th behind Pokerface. However, she showed substantial improvement when reappearing after a 2 month break when she scored a shock upset win over 1200M beating her more fancied stable mate Magic Dust by 2 ¼ lengths and winning from end to end. She has already had a lung opener this season when she was ridden wide throughout and made a little late progress to finish 4th behind Summer Rays again over 1200M. This step up in trip is not certain to suit her but the yard is in good form at present and she can be given each way consideration if showing some more improvement on just her 4th start.
MASSIMO :-This son of Mull of Kintyre comes from the powerful Pesi Shroff yard and must be respected in a maiden on that score alone. He made his debut on Derby weekend in the Breeders Produce Stakes suggesting that his trainer has a high opinion of him and he finished 7th about 8 ½ lengths behind the winner Tutankhamun. He was turned out again in a 7 furlong maiden about 3 weeks later and showed a little improvement when finishing 4th to Caprisca with Themis and Selfie Star just ahead of him. He was put away after that and given time to improve. He has had a couple of easy workouts in Pune so may not be fully wound up but looks a classy sort and could well have improved substantially. The mare Dragnet is by Rainbow Quest and she has produced some decent types in the UK. This is her first foal in India.
WE BREAK THE RULES :-He is a full brother to the brilliant Classic winner Whomaketherules but has not shown anything like that sort of ability in 4 starts until date. He made his debut in an average 7 furlong maiden back in December and improved a bit from the rear to finish 5th to Timeless Deeds. He then ran modestly in 2 mile maidens later in the season, finishing 3rd to Perfect Star on the first occasion and to Gloriosus on the 2nd. However, he appeared to have improved in his earlier run this term where he finished a good 3rd behind Caprisca and Glyndebourne in the August handicap. He is more exposed than a couple of these so lacks the scope to improve significantly but can be involved in the finish if building on his last effort. He has P.S. Chouhan in the saddle today.
MOCASSIN :-This 3 year old filly trained by S.K. Sunderji is a full sister to the Class I colt Jefferson but has done little of note in 2 starts till date. She finished 7th to Gentillesse on her debut over 6 furlongs and did not race again in Mumbai. She had been working quite well in the build up to the Pune season and was fancied on the opening day but ran poorly and finished well beaten. She looks like she may still need more time to come to hand and is best watched today with C.S. Jodha taking over from Trevor.
CONCLUSION :- Turning Pointappears to be the best prepared amongst these and looks the most likely winner but the well bred and lightly raced Massimo looks a big danger in receipt of 5 ½ kilos although he may lack a touch in fitness.
Race No. 2 :- The Amazing Grace Trophy – Class I – Distance :- 1200M
BRYNHILL :-Gradually developed into a high quality sprinter and although he is now 8 years of age he still seems to have zest for racing. He has won 6 of his 26 starts till date and finished 2nd on 8 occasions which is a fine record although he has always been just a bit shy of top rung. He has been runner up in the S.C. Jain, the Sprinters Cup and the Akkasaheb Maharaj Trophy when in his prime so he merits respect in this company although he seldom runs upto that level nowadays. He has been campaigning mainly in Terms races but did win last season when dropped into a handicap over course and distance beating Deep Diver and Ageless. He ran a forward race this season in the Turf Club Trophy and back at his pet distance, he must be considered with Y.S. Srinath booked to ride.
ST.ANDREWS :- This 4 year old colt trained by Bezan Chenoy was a Guineas hopeful and very highly rated from the time he was a juvenile but suffered a setback in his juvenile season when one of the prime contenders for the Poonawalla Million and it was a terrific training effort to get him back to run 3rd in the Indian 2000 Guineas after nearly a year off the track. He went on to finish 2nd in the Ruia but was thought to be a non stayer and returned to 7 furlong handicaps, winning 2 on the trot. He reappeared in the Turf Club Trophy in Pune but found Accolade too strong and could only finish up 4th about 6 lengths behind the winner. This looks a much easier contest and if he can handle the drop to sprinting then he looks a major contender with A. Imran Khan up.
HARVEY :-Well bred 5 year old gelding from the S.K. Sunderji yard who was a model of consistency while he was racing regularly with 5 wins and 5 seconds to his name from 14 starts. He had really come into his own towards the end of the last Pune season and won back to back races over sprints scoring a Class I win over this trip over Renee and Deep Diver last October. However, he has been off the track since then and is another returning from a gap of about 300 days. He has been solidly prepared for his return and P. Trevor takes the ride so assuming he is fit and well after the long break, he should pick up where he left off and complete his hattrick. Both Yanna Rascala and Unforgettable You won last week after similar lay offs so that should bring about some encouragement and he looks a leading contender.
VALENTINO :- Aged and enigmatic 6 year old from the in form Narendra Lagad stable but he looks completely out of his depth in this company and has managed to sneak in at the bottom of the scale. He was well beaten on his previous attempts in Class I and may be looking to sneak into a place and steal some valuable prize money here. He is a total outsider and it would be a shock were he to prevail.
CONCLUSION :-This looks to be a straight fight between Harvey who would be given the edge if returning in the same form and the improving St. Andrews who may not relish the drop to sprinting after having raced over further recently. The aged Brynhill can upset if the pair are off their game
Race No. 3 :- The Beyond Belief Plate – 3 Year Olds Only – Distance :- 1000M
ORACLE :- Speedy Phoenix Tower gelding trained by Nazak Chenoy who comes into this unbeaten in 2 starts and bidding for a hattrick of 5 furlong wins. He has showed terrific speed in both his wins in Mumbai, beating Kramer and Shamwari in the R.J. Kolah Trophy on debut and then just about lasting out to hold off Wise Child and Pokerface in the Bahrain Trophy back in April. He appears to have maintained his form and fitness over the summer and moved attractively in a recent Mock Race. He looks in excellent shape at present with A. Imran Khan booked to ride and is strongly fancied to make it 3 in a row having bagged the plum rail draw.
GOD’S OWN :-Comes from the Narendra Lagad yard and is very experienced now with 6 runs under his belt having won on 2 occasions. He showed some decent form over sprints in Mumbai although he was well held by Oracle when the pair met in the Bahrain Trophy last time out. However, he looked vastly improved when making a winning reappearance this season, scooting clear of his rivals to win by 5 lengths. He seems to have maintained his form and fitness since, has the advantage of a run under his belt and should give Oracle a much tougher fight this time around. He has the highest rating in this field and has Dashrath Singh on board.
HEROINE :-She is trained by Malesh Narredu but began her racing in the Bangalore Summer and is making her debut in Western India. She ran a good race on debut over 1200M when finishing a close 3rd to Apalachee and duly built on that by demolishing the opposition over 1100M next time out, showing excellent speed and clocking a time of 1.06.83 whilst winning by 6 lengths. She appears to be progressing very nicely and has been working well so looks a big danger to all although she is tackling the Pune track for the first time. Her sire Zoffany was a champion colt trained by Aiden O Brien in Ireland who won 5 races at 2 including the Group I Phoenix Stakes and was runner up to the mighty Frankel in the St. James Palace Stakes. This is the first foal of the mare Deep Springs in India.
NEXTSTAR :-Is also a got abroad from the ImtiazSait yard who has raced thrice during the Mumbai season and shed her maiden tag on her last start. She ended up 5th to Kramer on debut over 1000M and again finished 5th upped to 6 furlongs behind Lady Sergeant in what appears to be quite a strong maiden. She found a weak maiden race back at 5 furlongs a couple of weeks later and easily beat Optimum and Arc Shine to win by 2 ¼ lengths in a modest time. She looks to have to improve significantly on the bare form to be a factor in this contest and appears more likely to fight it out for minor honours with P.S. Chouhan taking over in the saddle.
CONCLUSION :-Oracle looks likely to complete a hattrick of wins in spite of conceding weight all around but he could face a stiffer challenge from God’s Own who looks greatly improved and has the advantage of a race run on the track. Bangalore challenger Heroine clocked an excellent time and could be a big danger if adapting to the stiff 5 furlongs and the quirky Pune track
Race No. 4 :- The Storm Tracker Plate – Class III – Distance :- 2000M
VULCAN :-This 4 year son of Sedgefield trained by Adhirajsingh Jodha quickly developed into a solid stayer and is a winner of 3 of his 10 starts till date. He likes to dominate proceedings and scored his maiden victory over 2000M last year beating Volantis quite comfortably. He then ran a cracker in the Pune Derby before being hampered by Accolade and dislodging the rider. His primary target during the Mumbai season was the Indian Derby and he ran 2 mile and a quarter races finishing a close 2nd to Frosty first time out and then just about gaining revenge on more favourable terms. He came up short in the Derby and was well beaten but bounced back to form when giving weight and a beating to Geranium over 2400M in this grade. He has been solidly prepared for his reappearance run and impressed in a Mock Race a couple of weeks ago. He has to concede weight all around here but appears to be in good nick and looks a strong contender with Y.S. Srinath in the saddle.
SUSSEX PRIDE :-This 4 year old colt trainer by Subhag Singh did nothing of note in the early stages of his career but blossomed during the last Mumbai season striking a rich vein of form. He landed a smart gamble over a mile on Derby Day, proving too good for Sweeping Move and Firenze and winning convincingly. Dropped to a mile on promotion he could only finish 5th to Elsa in a muddling contest but then stepped up to score back to back wins, first getting the better of Flashing Honour over 2000M and then scoring a shock win over a mile in this class pipping hot favourite Sherlock close home. He was given a lung opener over a mile this season when an unextended 4th to Nelson’s Blood and that should put him spot on for this. P. Trevor retains the ride, he may still have some improvement left in him and could very well bounce back and earn another bracket for his small yard.
DROGO : -This 4 year old ImtiazSait ward is another who appears to be progressing very nicely and improving with every run. After a string of promising and suggestive runs, he finally shed his maiden tag over a mile in Mumbai, getting going late after looking in trouble early in the straight and finishing on strongly to beat Ventura and Kiss From A Rose close home. He showed significant improvement on his next start which was on this track over 9 furlongs where he travelled strongly throughout and easily beat Olly Boy by 4 ¼ lengths, looking a winner a long way from home. This additional furlong should be right up his alley, he has scope to improve again and P.S. Chouhan now takes over from J. Chinoy. He has a 7 ½ kilo penalty to contend with but could well improve past that.
SIMON SAYS :- He is an enigmatic 5 year old who has won 2 of his 15 starts till date, one of those wins coming in most impressive fashion last time out over a mile in the lower class where he trounced Lord Grantham and Lady Be Good to score by almost a 5 length margin. He comes into this in top form and although he too has a 7 ½ kilo to contend with, A. Sandesh has been booked to ride so it is very dangerous to ignore him and he should make a determined bid to repeat his last performance.
LORD OF THE SEA :-The only 3 year old on view here, he has been quietly progressive in his 4 starts in Mumbai and looks to be developing into a nice type. He finished an easy and unextended 3rd when looking soft on debut behind Glyndebourne and Perfect Star and showed improvement when chasing home Perfect Star over a mile next time out, reducing the deficit by almost 8 lengths. He then ran a cracker in the Breeders Juvenile Colts Championship where he ended a close 5th in a bunched finish very close to the likes of Caprisca and Pure Zinc. Finding a weak 9 furlong maiden towards the end of the season he showed a willing attitude to easily account for Lady Be Good and win quite comfortably. He too looks to have been handed a stiff opening mark but Timeless proved too good in a similar contest last week and this strong galloping sort looks likely to do so as well with Neeraj Rawal in the saddle.
CONCLUSION :-In spite of the small field this looks highly competitive and tough to pick a clear winner. The 3 year old Lord of the Sea is selected receiving weight from his elders and looking to have the maximum scope to improve as he has been progressing nicely. Hattrick seeking Drogo and the top weighted Vulcan look likely to trouble him the most.
Race No. 5 :- The K. Raghunath Plate – Class IV – Distance :- 1600M
ZANZIBAAR :-Solid handicapper trained by Nirad Karanjawala who was just one win to his name in 14 starts till date convincingly winning a mile maiden over course and distance last season. He has struggled in the higher class since then but went desperately close to repeating on the sole occasion that he was dropped back into this grade, just failing to reel in Angel Girl in a strong contest over 1400M. He again ran poorly upped to Class III on his last run but returns to a mark where he has done well off in the past. He has been given enough track work to have him fit first time out and with P.S. Chouhan booked, he looks set to run a very big race off top weight.
DAFFODIL :-Beautifully bred and progressive looking 3 year old from the powerful Pesi Shroff yard who was been improving with every run and is likely to do so again. Daughter of the well performed Hills and Stars, she made her debut over 1400M in the Midday Trophy, was not fancied that day and finished an easy 5th to stable companion Windsor Forest. She was then taken to Bangalore to contest a rich maiden on Invitation Cup weekend and covered a lot of ground from the rear to finish 4th to Mauritania. Returning to her home centre she showed she had improved when getting the better of Forest Fairy and Texas Gold close home. She has been well rested and solidly prepared for this handicap debut and the extra furlong looks likely to suit her. She has Neeraj Rawal in the saddle once more and looks a major player to continue her progression.
BROTHERSOFTHEWIND :- Comes from the small yard of trainer Vinesh and his connections have always had a high opinion of him but his career so far has been erratic. He ran a few promising races as a juvenile without quite winning and his first couple of handicap starts were below par but he showed glimpses of his ability on his last start in Mumbai when coming with a strong run to edge out Cristo Boss and Brabourne and earn his maiden success. His run on the opening day appeared to be a lung opener with Hanumant Singh on board but he should be fitter and sharper today and the same rider up again, he is expected to give a better account of himself.
GODSENT :-Beautifully bred by Multidimensional out of Congrats, this 5 year old from Adhiraj Singh Jodha’s yard clearly possesses ability but looks very temperamental. He needs to be held up off a strong pace and delivered late and wide but he can be a potent factor when things go his way as he showed when scoring his solitary success, coming with a powerful run to reel back Mathaiyus who has gone on to become a Group Class performer. Godsent on the other hand has gone backwards after that run and after a poor Mumbai season, it is hoped that he will have been freshened up by the break and could be a danger to all if in a galloping mood.
BLAVATSKY:- Nicely bred 6 year old from the C.D. Katrak yard who took advantage of her lenient handicap mark last time out to score her 2nd win in 22 starts getting the better of Alfonso and Commandperformance in a fighting finish in the lower class. This looks decidedly tougher under a penalty and upped in grade so although she is in good form and has not been very harshly penalized she will find it tough to win and looks more of a place prospect.
UNTITLED :- This 4 year old trained by H.J. Antia has often caught the eye in the paddock as a well conformed individual but has yet to make the frame in 9 starts till date. However he has raced almost exclusively over sprint trips while the progeny of Sussex appear to come into their own given more galloping ground. It is significant that he steps up to a mile today and K. Nazil who has been riding some good races recently has been booked. A lot to be taken on trust with him but this step up in trip could do the trick and running at a feather weight, he could be a rank outsider who could spring a surprise.
CONCLUSION :-Daffodils looks an improving sort who could prove too classy for this field and is taken to score. Zanzibaarthe top weight looks the obvious danger with an eye to be kept on the feather weighted Untitled
Race No. 6 :- The Supreme Star Plate – Maiden 3 Year Olds – Distance :- 1200M
ALBARETO :- Debutant from the S.S. Shah yard who looks a good sort on paper and has been working relatively well in the build up to his debut run. Connections usually have one or two above average performers in their midst and this colt looks to a decent sort on pedigree and is expected to run a good race on debut against more seasoned performers.
COOL EYES :- She has raced twice till date, making her debut way back in December where she finished tailed off but showing improvement when reappearing on this track a couple of weeks ago, finishing midfield to Mygrator over this trip. She is likely to improve further on just her 3rd start and the switch from Amyn Merchant to Neeraj Rawal suggests that she is more fancied today. She has yet to prove her ability on the track but should be respected and looks to have each way claims.
GAZINO :-This NosherCama trained 3 year old Surfrider colt is the highest rated in this field and also the most experienced having had 4 decent starts till date but the standard of form that he sets is not particularly high. 3rd to Rotterdam over 6 furlongs on debut, he went on to finish 4th to Windsor Forest upped to 7 furlongs next time out. He again ran 3rd back down at 6 furlongs when chasing home Benefactor and was strongly fancied on his last start down to the minimum trip but was beaten by Princess P when an odds on favourite. He has been working quite well and this trip looks about right at present so he looks a strong fancy with P.S. Chouhan now up but he could be vulnerable to something with a little more quality.
ANNIVERSARY GIRL:- Narendra Lagad trained 3 year old who is a maiden after 4 starts, her best effort coming when finishing a faraway 3rd to impressive Cerrado on her penultimate start in Mumbai. She had an introductory run on the Pune track 2 weeks ago when finishing 7th behind Harmony Of The Sea over 6 furlongs but should have improved for that run and the switch to A. Imran Khan is a big positive. She has been working well and could add some pep to the finish.
ARASHI :-Nicely bred got abroad from the Pesi Shroff yard, she ran a promising race on her only start over this trip back in March, making easy headway from the rear to finish a leisurely 4th to Kramer with her rider not being harsh on her at all. She has been brought along steadily since that run and runners from the yard often improve dramatically from first run to second. She has been working alongside last weeks impressive winner YannaRascala and with A. Sandesh booked, she appears to be the class act in this field and will be hard to beat if fit and well.
LADY ALMEDA :- This 3 year old trained by Malesh Narredu is bred to come into her own over distance trips so it was encouraging that she showed good speed on her debut over 1000M when she raced in touch with impressive Clymene until entering the straight and kicked on to finish up a clear 2nd. She has a fitness advantage over most of the fancied runners and the extra furlong will clearly suit her so she looks a strong contender to go one better with Prashant Dhebe booked to ride.
CONCLUSION :-Arashilooks an interesting contender here and seems a strong fancy to win on her first run on the Pune track. Lady Almeda looks the main danger after her good 2nd on debut while Cool Eyes and Albareto hail from good yards and catch the eye on pedigree
Race No. 7 :- The Star Trainer Plate – Class V – 4 Years Old & over – Distance :- 1400M
DIBABA :- 4 year old filly trained by Sanjay Kolse who has one win to her name from 11 starts till date, scoring her maiden success in a similar contest off a mark of 22 over a mile back in August last year, beating Sir Song and Samurai in the process. She has come back down to a mark of 25 now and Sandesh who was on her the only time she won has been booked to ride again so clearly connections fancy their chances. She looks well placed on the scale but has to show that she still retains her ability and if she does so, then she will surely be a factor.
SAIL PAST :- Erratic 6 year old gelding from the Narendra Lagad stable who has tumbled down in the scales with a string of poor efforts but gave signs on his last start that he was rediscovering some form when racing prominently and kicking on to be a close 5th to Cracklin’ Rosie. He is looking very attractively handicapped on the pick of his old form and is another who bears close watching with N.B. Kuldeep now booked to ride and claiming a valuable 5 kilos. He has a good each way chance but lacks the scope of some of the younger horses.
HEADLINES :-This 4 year old Arazan filly from Altaf Hussain’s yard has raced just 6 times till date and was a failed favourite last time out in Mumbai finishing 7th but only 3 ¼ lengths behind the winner Super Bolt. She had previously finished a close 3rd over 1000M to Pacific Dunes and could have been sharpened up over the break. The booking of A. Imran Khan is a positive and she is another who could improve and go well.
TIME OF MY LIFE :-Well bred4 year old filly who is from the in form Hosidar Daji stable and has been threatening to strike in her last few starts. She finished 3rd to Go Marisa Go in her last start over 7 furlongs on Mumbai and was again 3rd on the opening day over a sharp 5 furlongs behind Juggernaut and Elysee. Step up to this trip and the presence of Neeraj in the saddle are both big positives, she is working very well and now looks a leading fancy to score.
ALFONSO :- Aged 5 year old from the Narendra Lagad yard who has dropped down to a very attractive mark and nearly pulled off his 2nd win last time out when finishing on late and going down by a whisker to Blavatsky. He is likely to build on that effort and strip fitter and now has the services of P. Trevor in the saddle. He looks very well handicapped at present and if he turns up in the same mood then he has a strong chance to go one better.
CONCLUSION :-A very open looking finale with a tentative choice being the well bred Time of My Life from a stable which is currently firing on all cylinders and with Neeraj Rawal in the saddle. Dibaba warrants close attention with Sandesh up while both the Narendra Lagad runners look well handicapped and are capable of spoiling the party
 (Disclaimer : Views are entirely that of the correspondent only and RWITC takes no responsibility for the same)

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