Racing: Trotting superstars set for intriguing battle in Cup

By Michael Guerin

Speeding Spur has good to very good gate speed. Photo / Harness Racing Victoria
Speeding Spur has good to very good gate speed. Photo / Harness Racing Victoria

The men behind trotting's two superstars know what they have to do in tonight's $100,000 Anzac Cup - the problem is doing it.

Both drivers Ricky May (Monbet, drawn one) and Josh Dickie (Speeding Spur, two) would love to lead the group one 2200m mobile, especially in a race that appears to have little mid-section pressure.

Speeding Spur has good to very good gate speed and would normally be favoured to cross to the front over Monbet, who has rarely been asked to leave the mobile at speed.

But overlooked by some could be the fact that when Monbet suffered his worst defeat of the season, in the Grand Prix at Melton in February, he actually left the mobile very quickly and would have led but for Keystone Del being drawn inside him.

With the exciting pair drawn right alongside each other, Speeding Spur will need to get almost two clear lengths across Monbet before the first bend, which is an enormous ask.

"It won't be easy so I will have to sum it up early," says Dickie.

"But we don't have to lead to win and if we go really hard early, which I am prepared to do, who knows where the gaps might open up."

With more recent racing under his belt Monbet deserves his favouritism as what could become one of the great trotting rivalries of all time continues.

The start also looks crucial in tonight's $120,000 Caduceus Club Classic because if Ready To Fire can hold the lead from the ace, her stablemate Spanish Armada could secure the trail and that would make her clearly the one to beat.

But while the All Stars stable have a six-strong attack in the race, Delightful Memphis has looked every bit at talented as them and if the dynamic of the race changes early then she can still win from the second line.

The Sires' Stakes Trot has genuine depth, with Marcoola emerging as the best of the crop so far.

But he has only had one look at Alexandra Park so must be vulnerable, particularly with his three main rivals drawn inside him.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf05 at 27 Sep 2016 03:22:57 Processing Time: 512ms