Zac Purton is increasingly battling to gain sufficient support to dethrone Douglas Whyte this season in the jockey championship, but he should at least have the firepower to win his share at Happy Valley on Wednesday night.
Whyte is unstoppable at present and threatens to dominate again on Wednesday but Caspar Fownes continues to give Purton some serious chances.
He will be aboard Gracytom and Snitzel Kid to open the midweek program for the trainer, and both are well drawn, a factor which is a big assistance on the widest rail position, the C+3.
Gracytom’s only wins have come at Happy Valley, the latest in October over the same 1,000m course and in the same class as he tackles this time from a similar low barrier.
Snitzel Kid was close up in a similar race last start over 1,200m from barrier nine but looks better suited in barrier four and with Purton taking over from local jockey Jacky Tong.
Sydney jockey Tim Clark’s return home was officially-announced on Monday and he will be keen to make the best of the six meetings that he has left. The third race on Wednesday should offer his best chance, with last-start winner Gold Edition suited by the Valley 1,000m, with the rail out.
The speedy gelding was impressive beating a similar field up the Sha Tin straight in February, and is already a winner over the course last season.
Clark also has a chance in the fourth race on Perfect Ten for Sean Woods – the seven-year-old has finished well back at his last two runs at Sha Tin but has been much better suited at Happy Valley all his career and might be a sharp improver. He has become particularly well-graded now and is fitter after three unplaced starts from a long injury-enforced break.
By Nathan Mody