Byerley Park trainer Leo Molloy may be relatively new to the game, but he knows a trick or two about canny placement.
Molloy took the versatile but limited Credit Crunch south to Riccarton for a successful raid four starts back.
Pick6 punters looking for a bank-builder should follow the pair again at Rotorua today in their pursuit of more low-hanging fruit.
Back in modest highweight company in race two, Credit Crunch is a standout.
Promising fillies My Blossom Lady and Joy are definite includes after their recent placings, but the chances don't end there. A freshened Wrecking Crew could be the upsetter. He has been thereabouts in most of his runs without a whole lot of luck. He ran a slasher for second on debut last September. A repeat effort with Alex Forbes' 3kg claim would take him close.
The well-bred Tsar Reformer and Rabiosa also showed enough in their debut fifths to be included in multiples.
Americanidol hasn't helped himself with awkward beginnings in his last two efforts. If he jumps on terms this time from the inside gate it's going to take a smart one to run him down. He ran an unlucky second on debut this course and distance in January. Recent trial performers Chill Bill, Joyful The Great, Le Couguar and Pride And Passion all appeal as back-up types if the budget will stretch.
If the forecast rain arrives in time, Gijima is a big chance again in this grade. He's a past course and distance winner and is 2-2 on slow surfaces. If not, you may need to widen the net. Vuela is the best chance if the rain stays away. She has looked above average in limited attempts. She did well last time out for third in a far stronger line-up after being tapped wide in transit. Course performer Lady Carolyn and the improving Copper Blonde are also worth consideration.
Easily the trickiest leg with a stack of trial performers up against placegetters who have had their graduation chances. Rite Of Spring, Our Supernova, See Thru and Inara Belle fall into the former category. But you will also need the more experienced Takeover, Agent Ziva, Rio Diva, Turquoise and Between Dreams on the ticket. Between Dreams could be some value. She hasn't had much luck lately and is a course placegetter.
Rein in the outlay with just Cody Cat and Almon on the ticket. Both benefit from apprentice claims and have looked destined for bigger things in a handful of starts. From his two gate, Almon is going to be tough to contain. He was an impressive debut winner here last December. Cody Cat botched his chances last time out by being slow away. The start before, he impressed winning over this trip against a handy field.
If Carniva Boy is ever going to break through for a third career win it will be against this calibre of field. He tries hard but has just run into a handful better of late. Palemo must be the biggest threat, despite a similar strike rate. He will be camped on the speed again and can also be relied on to fight to the finish. Course specialist Calgacus could be the upsetter. He's been impossible to follow lately but earns respect on the score of his near-impeccable course record.
* Meanwhile, across the Ditch, Laser Hawk is a steady favourite for Saturday's Australian Derby at Randwick, despite drawing wide in the A$1.5 million feature.
The Gai Waterhouse-trained galloper heads the market at $3.20, ahead of Silent Achiever, the lone filly in the race, at $4 for the 2400m classic.
Andrew Baddock, racing manager for Laser Hawk's owner Gooree Stud, was not at all concerned with the wide barrier.
"He is a big strong horse that will roll forward so being out wide is not a problem," he told the Herald Sun.
"It gives Nash [Rawiller] time to get him into his rhythm and then he can put him to sleep at the front of the field." A field of 13 will line up for the Derby, with three New Zealand-trained gallopers.
Silent Achiever drew barrier nine. To be ridden by Hugh Bowman, she will be looking to follow in the footsteps of another filly, Shamrocker, who won the race last year.
Last Saturday's impressive Tulloch Stakes winner Polish Knight came up with gate two.
Rosehill Guineas runner-up Ocean Park was a late entry for the Derby and is on the third line of betting at $4.80 after coming up with barrier six.
Strike The Stars will begin from barrier one, while Victoria Derby placegetter Sabrage has the outside gate.