Three heats of the Group 3 Sportingbet Cyril Rowe Plate will be conducted at Bulli on Wednesday night over the 472 metre distance. Mark Wilcox has a number of talented chasers engaged with recent Goulburn track record holder Natural Player engaged in Heat One and his littermate and Goulburn Cup winner Knocka’s Return in Heat Two.
Cyril Rowe Plate Heat One (Race 5 at 8:28pm)
Natural Player (2) recently broke the 350 metre record at Goulburn. He comes into this off a win at Bulli in 26.29. He had two starts at the track and distance for a perfect record of two from two. His recent form also reads eight wins from his last 10 starts. He is one of the main dangers in this heat.
My Signature (1) also has good recent form. He has won seven of his last 10, including three wins at Maitland in best of night. Maitland is similar to Bulli so he shouldn’t have too much trouble adapting at his first look at the track. Pantone Green (7) possesses plenty of early speed and will need to lead to be a chance. Woods (4) and Lifestyle Lad (5) are both risky at box rise and may struggle from the middle draws.
Lachlan Bomber (3) is a dog with plenty of talent but he is in poor form of late. Ritza Ryder (6) loves Bulli, only missing a place on three occasions from 14 starts. He is getting on in age but can’t be written off. Lastly, Zipping Logan (8) is returning to a sprint distance after a small campaign over 600 at Gosford. He has two wins at Bulli to his credit with a best of 26.41.
Cyril Rowe Plate Heat Two (Race 6 at 8:48pm)
The standouts in this race are Goulburn Cup winner Knocka’s Return (7) and Belfast Johnny (8). Belfast Johnny has won 11 of his 17 career starts and loves box eight, winning three from the pink alley. He’s got great speed once he musters. Another in a similar vein is Knocka’s Return. He isn’t always best away, but when he winds up he really motors. He has won four times at Bulli and only unplaced once in his eight starts over the distance at the track. His best time is 26.16.
Ferly Reign (3) looks like the early leader in the race. He has been beginning very well of late but will need to pinch a break on the strong run home dogs in the race. Evoked (1) might appreciate the move back to an inside box after struggling with outside draws at Wentworth Park in recent weeks. She has only won once at Bulli in a moderate 26.94 so she will need to improve on that to factor into calculations in this heat.
Fancy Rhythm (2) is usually a good beginner but he has missed the start and found trouble his last three runs. He’s won at Bulli in 26.48. If Osteria Mozza (6) runs up to his best he can certainly lay some claim to this race. He has started three times over this distance at Bulli for two wins and one place and a best of 26.48. He hasn’t managed a win from the box though. Retiring (4) has won once at Bulli in 26.43 while Gold Buccaneer (5) is giving away a lot in experience. He is only six starts into his career and has recorded 26.45 at the track and distance.
Cyril Rowe Plate Heat Three (Race 7 at 9:08pm)
Recent ‘The Collerson’ winner Gradence (3) lines up in this heat from a suitable draw. He isn’t the fastest away at box rise but if he gets any room, he will be finishing off strongly. He has won at Bulli in 26.52. Ay Grade (4) has also performed well at Wentworth Park recently and comes to Bulli with three wins from his last four starts. He has been to Bulli once before and left with a 26.33 victory.
Spring Eddie (2) likes box two and has two wins over the distance with a best of 26.33. He looks the early leader. Three Rivers (1) is a well bred dog who is having only his 10th start. He has early speed and has won at Wentworth Park and Dapto. He is having his first start at Bulli and gives away a lot in experience. Another one in similar circumstances to Three Rivers is Major Kahn (7), who has only had 10 starts and is having his first look at Bulli. He has performed well at Richmond and Gosford and is good early.
Scout’s Gold (5) led Knocka’s Return last week at Bulli and was defeated two lengths in 26.44. She had box four last week and will need to repeat her efforts from last week to be a chance. Belfast Kaiser (6) hasn’t drawn well as he doesn’t have any form from outside boxes. His only win at the track came from box one in 26.44. Fast Archer (8) hasn’t won since August 2013 and hasn’t raced since late September. He’s flown around Wentworth Park in 29.65 and the market will be the best guide to his chances but he certainly possesses a lot of talent.
The first two from each heat plus the two fastest thirds will progress to the $25,000 to the winner final on Wednesday, 29 January 2014.