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Posted on - 25 Nov 2017

- By Cyrus Naterwalla
Race No. 1 :- The M.H. Ahmedbhoy Trophy – Class IV – Distance :- 1800M
BABY FACE :-3 year old gelding trained by M.P. Jodha who has been showing good progression as he has been stepping up in trip and was a decisive maiden winner over 2400M last time out, outstaying Othello to win decisively. He appears to relish galloping ground so this drop down in trip does not look ideal but the long Mumbai straight should suit him. He is out handicapped with Samarjeet on their earlier meeting over a mile but has clearly improved since then. Y.S. Srinath is a very positive Jockey booking and in this weak field he looks a very strong contender.
OLLY BOY :-Experienced 5 year old colt trained by AdhirajsinghJodha he has run 23 times till date with 2 wins and 4 seconds to his name. He is usually effective over longer trips as well and it has been a long time since his last win. He has been out of form for so time now so needs to bounce back quickly. NirmalJodha has been booked to ride but he looks to have been entered to ensure that the race goes through and would be given a tiny upset chance.
SAMARJEET :-This 3 year old Varenar gelding from the yard of S.K. Sunderji has had a chequered career till date with 1 victory to his name from 7 starts. After showing no form in his first few runs, he suddenly sprung to life with a decisive victory over a mile on his penultimate run, where he had Baby Face well beaten in 4th and on that run, he is weighted to confirm the form. He was withdrawn on his next intended start and may not have been at his best last time out when tried over 2400M and he finished well down the field behind Baby Face. He may have been recovering from a setback that day and can be forgiven one poor run at this early stage. A. Imran Khan comes down to take the ride and back at this much more suitable trip, he could very well bounce back and continue his progression.
KOMANDANT :- Aged 6 year old gelding from the stables of S.A. Waheed, he has been rather inconsistent in his career having run 18 times till date and gained just a solitary success although that win did come over course and distance and he had dropped back down to that mark now. However, he has been woefully out of form for a long time now and there is on obvious reason why he should suddenly rediscover his best form. The booking of S. Jaykumar suggests that he is out for an airing but he can be given a small upset chance.
CONCLUSION :-This clearly should be between the two 3 year olds Baby Face and Samarjeet but it looks like a toss up between the two. Samarjeet is handicapped to finish ahead of Baby Face on the strength of their last meeting over a mile but the latter has clearly improved since and finished way ahead of the former over 2400M last time out although Samarjeet may have been off colour that day and also a non stayer. Back down to 1800M, it should be very close between the pair and perhaps whoever is looking fitter in the paddock could be supported.
Race No. 2 :- The Gateway of India Plate – Class III – Distance :- 1800M
DROGO :-This 4 year old Rebuttal colt from trainer ImtiazSait’s yard has run 12 times till date with 2 back to back wins on his resume, coming over 1600 and 1800M respectively. After a string of placed efforts in the early part of his career over shorter distances, he showed good improvement when upped to a mile and scored a gritty maiden win on his last start of the previous Mumbai season. He followed it up with an impressive 9 furlong win on his first start in Pune but has appeared to have been in the handicappers grip since upped into this grade and has been running consistently without winning. He may have been freshened up by the short break, his track work of late has been good and Y.S. Srinath has been booked to ride. He does appear a shade vulnerable against the 3 year olds and could more likely fight it out for minor honours.
BIG SUR :-Improving Win Legend 3 year old gelding trained by Sanjay Kolse, he has been one of the yard’s highly rated runners and has performed with credit in his limited career so far. He has 2 wins to his name from 7 starts, his maiden victory coming over 1400M on just his 2nd run where he beat Rochester with Manifold back in 5th that day. He went on to run an excellent close 4th in the Breeders Juvenile Colts Championship before summering in Bangalore where he ran twice, finishing a good 4th in a strong Class III event featuring the likes of Sana and Mauritania. He returned to Pune to score a fighting win over Domination and Forest Fairy in a mile before finding himself out of his depth in the Pune Derby. This race looks decidedly easier, P. Trevor has been booked to ride and he looks a leading fancy to return to the winner’s circle and should be the one to beat.
FURIOUS N FAST :- 4 year old filly trained by NiradKaranjawala she is a winner of 2 of her 9 races, her last win coming early in the last Pune season over 1400M in the lower class. She has had 2 runs in this grade since then and has struggled on both occasions so she may need some respite from the handicapper before she can make further progression. She has been working quite well and A. Imran Khan takes the ride so she could fight it out for the minor places but looks vulnerable from a win standpoint.
DAUGHTEROFTHESUN :- Well bred got abroad 3 year old from the MaleshNarredu yard, she looks a strong galloping sort and showed good improvement during the last Pune season, running well on all 3 of her starts over a mile. She seems to like dominating proceedings as she showed when holding on grimly to beat Zanara and shed her maiden tag and again when finishing a good 2nd to Bateleur in the General Rajendrasinhji Million on her last start. She was not as good when hold up tactics were employed on the run in between when only 3rd to Samarjeet but she has been working well and should be able to dominate in this small field. C.S. Jodha has been booked to ride and although Big Sur appears to have the stronger form, she looks a live danger and could very well take this if allowed to control the gallop from the front.
CONCLUSION :-Again this should be a straight fight between Big Sur and Daughterofthesun. The Sanjay Kolse ward has the better form and is just preferred but tactics could play a big role here and if Daughterofthesun is allowed to control the pace from the front, then she could steal the race.
Race No. 3 :- The Bangalore Turf Club Trophy – Class I – Distance :- 1200M
DANCING PHOENIX :- Is a quality 7 year old sprinter trained by Dallas Todywalla who has been a wonderful servant to connections over the years with an admirable record of 10 wins from 33 starts and he has the unique distinction of having won a Group Race in almost every racing centre in the country. He was a most deserving winner of the Dhunjibhoy Sprint Million on Pune Derby day which was his first Group success in Western India and he looks the class horse in this field. He has to shoulder the back breaking weight of 66 kilos and if 5 kilo claimer H. Zeeshan can harness his energy and get the fractions right, he could very well prove to be too classy for this lot. He might be collared late on in the long Mumbai straight but cannot be left out of consideration with his yard in prime form at present.
HARVEY :-Is an improving 5 year old sprinter from the S.K. Sunderji yard who was off the track for almost a year before returning midway through the Pune season. His overall record is impressive with 6 wins and 5 seconds from 17 starts and he clocked a fabulous time of 0.56.77 when scoring over 1000M on his penultimate start. Last time out at his first attempt in top company, he finished 4th behind Dancing Phoenix and with A. Imran Khan up today, he looks a strong fancy in spite of the heavy weight.
NASCAR :-Very speedy 5 year old mare trained by ImtiazSait, she has 5 wins to her name from 16 starts and is usually most effective over the minimum trip. However, last time out after returning from a 6 month absence, she showed that she has gained stamina as she has matured and was a decisive pillar to post winner over this trip, comfortably beating the reopposing Champagne by 2 ¾ lengths. She seems to be in great heart at present and should improve for that run as she must have been rusty. Raghuveer Singh gets on particularly well with her but she may find it hard to dominate with Dancing Phoenix in the field plus the long Mumbai straight might find her out. She looks an each way prospect.
CHAMPAGNE :- 5 year old mare from the yard of Rehanullah Khan, she has 5 wins to her name from 20 starts but seems to be on her way back to form after having gone off the boil earlier in the year. After needing a lung opener earlier in the Pune season she looked to be coming back to her best last time out when she finished on nicely to take 2nd spot behind Nascar and she is now weighted to reverse that form. She has been working quite well of late and P. Trevor takes the ride so she must be seriously considered off what looks a decent weight.
GOVERNOR GENERAL :- Tough and consistent 5 year old gelding from the M.K. Jadhav yard, he has been out of the first three just once in his 11 starts till date, winning 4 of them although he has also been raced sparingly. He has had just 2 starts in the Pune season, finishing 3rd on both occasions, last time out a shade disappointing in the lower class behind Ladislaus over this trip. He comes into this race receiving a lot of weight and has the assistance of NeerajRawal in the saddle so although he does need to find some more improvement in this company, he looks to have a good chance at the weights.
CONCLUSION :-In spite of the small field this looks quite tricky. It may be worth siding with the grand old galloper Dancing Phoenix who may just be too classy for this lot, provided H. Zeeshan can get the fractions right with his yard in cracking form at the moment. Harvey and Champagne are both improving sorts who also merit consideration.
Race No. 4 :- The Maharaja of Morvi Trophy – Terms, 3 Years Old Only – Distance :- 1400M
CASTLEBRIDGE :- One of the best 3 year olds in the country and a leading contender for the Indian 2000 Guineas, he is already a Multi Classic winner and is miles ahead on official ratings. Winner of 6 of his 9 starts overall and 6 of the last 7, his only defeat was a short head 2nd to Manifold in the Bangalore Summer Derby. He has swept the Mysore Classics before coming here and barring any mishap it is very hard to see him getting beaten today. P. Trevor takes the ride and he looks the proverbial “Good Thing” on paper and is likely to start at a very short price.
BATELEUR :- This 3 year old colt trained by Vishal Gaikwad has done extremely well in his limited career so far and clearly has the potential to improve into a very smart 3 year old although the Classics may come a bit too soon for him. Beginning his racing career only in August, he was a smooth maiden winner over 1400M and was immediately thrown into the deep end taking on the top colts in the S.A. Poonawalla Multi Million. Bateleur gave an impressive display, only being run out of it late on by Pure Zinc and ending up a creditable 2nd. He then went on to show he could come from off the pace as well when emphatically winning the General Rajendrasinhji Million on just his 3rd start. He is likely to have improved again and should be able to turn the tables on Pure Zinc today. He should follow Castlebridge home.
PURE ZINC :-Another lightly raced and progressive colt who possesses plenty of ability, Pure Zinc shot onto the radar when a shock winner of the Breeders Juvenile Colts Championship on only his 2nd start, beating the likes of Rochester, Timeless, Mygrator and Caprisca. He returned from a lengthy break to score an impressive win over Bateleur in the S.A. Poonawalla but was disappointing in the Pune Derby where he was no match for Lady In Lace and finished in mid field. He needs to bounce back from that performance and is still capable of improving for young AdhirajsinghJodha and Y.S. Srinath will ride but he has something to prove now and there is a suspicion that Bateleur may improve past him.
CAPRISCA :-Went down fighting to Pure Zinc in the Breeders Juvenile Colts Championship on this track last season and scored a smooth success over Glyndebourne on his reappearance run in Pune where he was ridden from off the pace for the first time. After being well beaten by Bateleur and Pure Zinc in the S.A. Poonwalla, he finished on nicely from off the pace to grab the 3rd spot in the Pune Derby so this drop back in trip may not be ideal for him. Overall he has 2 wins from 6 starts and may be using this as a warm up for longer distances which should suit him as his dam Xisca was a brilliant stayer.
CONCLUSION :-It is impossible to oppose Castlebridgewho is expected to canter home in this event and is miles ahead on official ratings. He looks a very strong contender for the Indian 2000 Guineas. Bateleurappears to be the next best.
Race No. 5 :- The StyleCracker Classic – Class III – Distance :- 1400M
CAMBRIDGE :-Has been brought along very steadily and looks an extremely progressive sort and would be Pesi Shroff’s chief contender for the first Colts Classic. He has run on 3 occasions, finishing an eye catching 2nd on his debut run back in March and since then winning both his races in decisive fashion. Last time out, reappearing from a long lay off, he showed a fine attitude to wear down the runaway Flag Flying and get up virtually on the line to score over 1400M and he is sure to improve considerably for that run and strip fitter. He has to concede 6 kilos to the potentially smart filly Bottega Louie but he is expected to do so and is a leading contender to give Vijay Mallya and P. Trevor a back to back double. He looks the one to beat.
STAR COMRADE :-He is a quirky 4 year old trained by Karthik G who clearly possesses ability but is not completely straightforward. He has 2 wins and as many as 6 seconds to his name from 17 starts and last time out, pulled off a smart gamble over this trip with S. Jaykumar in the saddle. He is now partnered by Y.S. Srinathand although he has a 6 ½ kilo penalty to contend with, he seems to have maintained his condition and looks likely to make a bold bid for a quick encore. If running upto his best again, he can be involved.
TIMELESS DEEDS :-This 3 year old filly trained by Narendra Lagad has run 10 times so far and has developed into a decent handicapper, winning twice and finishing runner up once. She scored a smart win on her last start over this trip in the lower class comfortably beating Marvel and Sumaaqwith the same rider up. She has been penalized 6 kilos for her win and also appears to have maintained her form and fitness as evidenced from her subsequent workouts. She is now upped in grade and taking on some potentially very good types so she looks more of a place contender today but is expected to run well and be involved in the proceedings with T.S. Jodha retaining the ride.
BOTTEGA LOUIE :-This 3 year old Excellent Art filly from S.K. Sunderji’s yard is a very interesting runner and is potentially quite exciting. She showed she was above average when unfancied on her debut in a strong field of winners when coming with a late burst to beat Goldie’s Pet and Texas Gold in good style. She then reappeared after a 6 month absence in a stiff Class III handicap and only found the progressive New England to be too strong, ending up a notable 2nd and beaten only a length. She was hot favourite on her last start but reared up badly in the gates as the start was given and lost all her chances there itself so that run is best ignored. She has been well prepared since then and C.S. Jodha who rode her to her maiden win is booked to ride. She gets a 6 kilo pull in the weights with Cambridge and looks a very real danger so it would be no surprise if she were to come out on top .
BUNTING :-Another potentially classy individual from M.K. Jadhav’s yard she has run 4 times till date and has won her last two starts quite gutsily and comes into this race bidding for a hattrick. She showed good determination on both her runs, first a 6 furlong maiden win where she just managed to hold off Take Five and next time over 1400M when nosing out Kodiak Queen and Marvel in a tight finish. She seems to have a good attitude and although she needs to step up on the bare form to trouble the more fancied rivals, she is improving nicely and could be a danger with N.S. Parmar up.
CONCLUSION :-The hattrick seeking Cambridge appears to be the most obvious choice here but it may be worth taking a chance on Bottega Louie. Her last run is best ignored and the form of her previous 2 runs is excellent. She gets a 6 kilo pull in weights and may just have the goods to upset Cambridge
Race No. 6 :- The StyleCracker Borough Stakes – Class IV, 3 Years Old Only – Distance :- 1000M
STALLONE :- Express Wish gelding from the Faisal Abbas stable, he has run 5 times till date and after a couple of modest placed efforts, showed good improvement on his last start back in August when he easily beat Stunner and Ascension over this trip. He has been well rested and prepared since then and has shown very good speed in his last few workouts on the sand. He may just have come to hand now and with C.S. Jodha to guide him again, he is given a strong chance to repeat in what looks a competitive event.
STUNNER :- Speedy 3 year old Dallas Todywalla ward who had been not quite seeing out her races and kept finding one or two too good over this trip before rewarding those who has persisted with her by scoring an overdue maiden success last time out where she held off My Precious and Malavika to win from end to end. She appears to be held by Stallone on their previous meeting but has clearly improved since then. P. Trevor has been booked to ride and she should make a brave attempt to win from end to end again but could be vulnerable to closers up the long Mumbai straight.
ANNIVERSARY GIRL :- One of two runners for the Narendra Lagad yard, she has raced over a variety of trips in her 8 runs, shedding her maiden on her last but one run over 1200M beating Rincon which does not appear to be great form. She looked out of her depth when racing against Class III opposition last time out and she tackles the 5 furlong trip for the first time which is an unknown. Raghuveer Singh claims a valuable 3 ½ kilos off and she merits consideration but looks more of a minor berth contender.
GOLD FIELD :- Looked an exciting sprinter in the making on her 2 runs on this track last season, finishing a good 4th on debut in a strong contest and then just edging out Queen’s Best when scoring her maiden victory over this trip. She was then off the track until the latter part of the Pune season and ran only modestly in her 2 starts in Pune. She may be better suited by the Mahalaxmi track and should strip fitter after the 2 lung openers. Stable apprentice S.A. Amit has been booked to ride, she has been working quite well and could very well bounce back now so should be respected .
QUEEN’S BEST :-Full sister to the high class sprinter Dandified who has herself looked an exciting prospect in her 2 runs till date, finishing runner up on both occasions. She made her debut over 1000M last January and in spite of not looking fully wound up finished on strongly to be a good 2nd to Juggernaut and then reappeared after an almost 3 month break to finish a close 2nd to Gold Field. She has been off the track since then so is reappearing after a long absence but has been solidly prepared and given a Mock Race on the last day of the Pune season. A paddock check is advertised to ascertain her fitness and if she is looking fit and well then she should take all the beating with stable jockey Bhawani Singh up.
HOPEILICIOUS :- Hails from the yard of S.S. Shah and is quite experienced run 5 times till date without success and he has recently moved into NiradKaranjawala’s yard and is having his first start for new connections. His best effort has been when finishing a modest 3rd over this trip to Excellent Gold and he is taking on better company here today so looks a rank outsider who stands a small chance to upset in spite of the booking of Neeraj Rawal
CONCLUSION :-This race basically centres around the fitness of the returning Queen’s Best and if she is fit and well then she should be hard to beat. Gold Field may do better returning to the Mahalaxmi track and looks the obvious danger along with the improving top weight Stallone
Race No. 7 :- The Secret Star Plate – Class V – Distance :- 1000M
SIA :- Nicely bred 3 year old from NiradKaranjawala’s yard, she has raced twice in maidens without much success but has been working very well for quite some time now and is now eased in grade into the lowest class. She continues to impress in her morning workouts and is open to improvement on just her 3rd start. A. Imran Khan is a positive jockey booking and in this weak field she looks to have a realistic chance of making it 3rd time lucky.
AME :-5 year old experienced gelding trained by M.K. Jadhav, he is a 31 race veteran who has managed only 1 win so far although he has placed on as many as 8 occasions. He is usually quite effective over this trip and off this sort of mark and the booking of P. Trevor suggests that connections are fancying their chances. The field looks relatively weak here so even though his recent form is not inspiring, he could very well bounce back and looks to have a good each way shout.
IMPOSSIBLE DREAM :- Fashionably bred and unexposed 4 year old from the Dallas Todywalla yard he has had 5 runs till date and nothing to show for them so far and is returning after a long absence having last raced in March of this year. He has his fitness to prove after such a long absence but his last few workouts have suggested that he has made some progress over the break. A paddock check is clearly advised but if looking well, he may be worth chancing at a long price with S.J. Sunil an interesting booking and yard in top form.
WHAT  A NICE GIRL :- 5 year old mare who began her career with C. Rajendra but most recently shifted to Arif Patel’s yard and she is still a maiden after 10 starts. However, she looked ready to strike over this trip when she was in form last season and her last 2 runs in Pune have been over unsuitable trips. She returns to a trip that should suit her and has NeerajRawal booked to ride so she should run much better today and must come into consideration .
MAKE IT SHINE :- Aged 6 year old gelding from the small yard of Vijay Kasbekar but showed that he still has zest for racing when scoring a shock win over 1200M a couple of starts ago with the same rider up. He has not run too badly on his 2 subsequent starts and looks to be in good form at present. He looks an each way contender and should be in the firing line
CONCLUSION :-a difficult finale with What A Nice Girl a tentative selection
 (Disclaimer : Views are entirely that of the correspondent only and RWITC takes no responsibility for the same)

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