Racing: Innovation looks likely at Tauranga

By Mike Dillon

Art Beat can score her first middle distance win today in the Kiwifruit Cup.

No Excuse Maggie (grey) has been fortunate to draw in the outside half of the field in the Tauranga Classic today.
No Excuse Maggie (grey) has been fortunate to draw in the outside half of the field in the Tauranga Classic today.

Difficult to find an absolute standout in the testing conditions at Tauranga today, but Innovation in the big sprint comes closest.

At level weights the slightly underrated Innovation (No1, R8) appeals in the Team Wealleans Tauranga Classic as she comes off her victory in similar class at Wanganui.

That victory was achieved easily and although today's conditions may not suit her ideally, she deserves to be in the top two selections.

So does Awapuni visitor Sacha (No6), already a winner on the track. There are a couple of reasons why it may pay to ignore her two beaten performances since she got the better of Art Beat at Awapuni three starts back. She is very good in heavy conditions and this race looks looks well within her scope. No Excuse Maggie (No2), like Innovation, has been fortunate to draw in the outside half of the field, which should be an advantage.

Kapsboy (No5, R2) probably got left in front a touch too soon when a close third at Te Rapa last start. He fought very bravely up the home straight and deserves a victory. Plenty of form and therefore winning chances in this race. Awapuni visitor Mighty Matt (No1) was a bit stiff last start and is worth a look, while Fluoro Lite (No8) and One Cool Message (No3) are right in the race.

Chapstick (No8, R5) is only a touch of luck away from a win. This looks like her type of field and she will have a bit of class on most of them. Supervisor (No2) is better than his last start 13th suggests.

It's a big ask, but Art Beat (No4, R6) can score her first middle distance win today in the Kiwifruit Cup. All her recent racing has been characterised by late finishes, suggesting that today's 2100m will suit. She has always been underrated. Indikator (No1) will be inconvenienced by his 61kg topweight, but he won't lie down trying. Expect him to give it a big shot and don't forget to cheer if he wins. Magna Carta (No3), and Pump Up The Volume (No7) are there for multiple bettors.

The No1 barrier draw did Smartly (R7, No9) no favours when she finished third behind Magna Carta at Ellerslie last start. She never stopped fighting, though, and with a typically brave effort she should go close today. Arnold (No2) goes up a grade for his win at Ellerslie last week, but he is in very solid form. Commett (No12) is worth consideration for multiples.

We should see here if Go Joeli (No4, R9) is the progressive horse he has at times looked. He won very easily when fresh at Pukekohe last start and as a winner on this track he rates again.

Let's Be A Star (No13) loves the mud and deserves a win after two tough efforts lately. Killa Question (No3) may have found the track a little too good at Tauherenikau last start. He won't today.

- NZ Herald

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