BZ can shift up a gear

Post - - Sport - AN­DREW HAR­RI­SON

OUIS GOOSEN has made a big splash since re­lo­cat­ing from the Vaal to Ash­bur­ton at the be­gin­ning of the sea­son. His 13 win­ners have come at a strike rate of 20% and not re­stricted to KZN with Zen Ar­cade win­ning the Gr3 Gra­ham Beck Stakes at Turf­fontein last Satur­day.

“When I first saw this place (Ash­bur­ton) I thought ‘ this is for me’, it’s horse heaven,” he re­vealed when quizzed on the rea­son for his move.

Goosen sad­dles three run­ners at Greyville to­day, debu­tante Leisure Lady in the first and two with def­i­nite chances, Bravo Zulu in the fourth and Shift­ing Gears in the sixth.

Shift­ing Gears is a late starter, this be­ing the fouryear-old’s third start in a ca­reer that only got go­ing three months ago. Af­ter two thirds she was stepped up to 1800m and she ran out a flu­ent win­ner of her maiden. Run­ner-up, Green Fairy did not do that form too many favours when only man­ag­ing third last Sun­day, but Shift­ing Gears looks ca­pa­ble of shift­ing up another notch to­day and she will need to, as she takes on a use­ful pair in Fli­chity By Farr and Shirley Valen­tine.

The lat­ter car­ries top weight and An­ton Mar­cus but it may be sig­nif­i­cant that Gunter Wro­ge­mann has kept faith with Shift­ing Gears rather than Shirley Valen­tine who he pi­loted into sec­ond last time out.

Fli­chity By Farr took on a strong field when fifth be­hind the promis­ing Hash­tagy­olo but prior to that was run­ning on well be­hind the use­ful Fiorella. Alyson Wright has stepped her up to 2000 m to­day and given her pedi­gree, the ex­tra could see her land her sec­ond win.

Bravo Zulu

Bravo Zulu has been knock­ing at the door for some time now and can go one bet­ter for Goosen in the Track & Ball Maiden over 1400m. He has come on nicely at his last two and now looks fully primed.

The Grey Cru­sader looks a threat be­cause although he comes off a four-month break, Doug Camp­bell’s run­ners are find­ing form.

If one sets any store by the speed rat­ings pub­lished in the Com­putaform then there look to be a host of strong con­tenders for the win­ner’s en­clo­sure. Turf Con­queror is rates 23 and 24 points clear of The Grey Cru­sader and Bravo Zulu re­spec­tively while Hokanui in the fifth, Lungi in the sixth and Crime Vic­tim in the sev­enth are all rated lengths clear of their ri­vals.

One wishes it was that easy. Hokanui has two mi­nor plac­ings to his credit in 10 starts but his best ef­fort did come over course and dis­tance last time out. But both Royal Rustler and Emer­ald Vic­tory step up to what looks to be a more suit­able trip for both and war­rant con­sid­er­a­tion.

Lungi is a long-time bat­tler and may have to bend the knee to Emma’s Or­a­cle and The Mata­dor. Greg Cheyne is the re­tained rider for the Kieswet­ter’s and Ridge­mont Rac­ing and is up from Cape Town to ride Emma’s Or­a­cle for Dun­can How­ells while The Mata­dor, for­mally with How­ells, has her first run in blink­ers and for Ya­dav Singh who has taken out his trainer’s brief again.

Crime Vic­tim

Crime Vic­tim has been strug­gling for his next win but takes a fur­ther drop in the rat­ings and it may be worth ig­nor­ing his dis­ap­point­ing poly de­but. His speed fig­ure is 16 points bet­ter than next rated Magesh’s Jet but a more likely chal­lenger could be sta­ble com­pan­ion Crys­tal Ball with claim­ing ap­pren­tice Ash­ton Ar­ries aboard.

How­ells has signed off in the last race of the last two meet­ings and that trend could con­tinue as he has four chances in the ninth this af­ter­noon. Of that quar­tet Sov­er­eign Mas­ter with sta­ble rider Kea­gan de Melo looks the pick in a field that does

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