The third Spring Bonanza Final of the Series looks to be anyone’s race on paper and the bookies are even having a tough time splitting the field with six of the fifteen runners at $10 or below.
The Will Clarken pair of Columbia and Experimentation are the two favoured runners, both coming off last start wins at the track.
Experimentation was impressive winning first up defeating Gougers and Akkacan coming from midfield to win by half a length over 1050m. The four-year-old has a great second-up record as well which shows why he’s well supported and with Jamie Kah on board riding at 56.5kgs, there are a lot of positives for the lightly raced gelding.
Columbia has only had two starts for the stable for a win and a second and the former Victorian sprinter seems to have settled in very well in his new surrounds. The gelding comfortably put away his rivals in his last start and Todd Pannell sticks with the horse. The Clarken/Pannell combination has been lethal this season with five wins from 13 starts at 38.5%.
You won’t find too many more consistent horses getting around than Zalmona. The Peter Blanch trained gelding has four wins and three placings from his last ten starts and barely runs a bad race. He’s going to carry 57kg after a very handy 3kg claim from Kayla Crowther. He will probably drop back from an outside barrier like he did last start where he was too strong for his rivals over 1050m. With three wins at 1100m over his career, he’s going to be one to watch late.
Another horse making good use of an apprentice claim is Chris Bieg’s Just a Bigger Dash. The big grey will be ridden by Anna Jordsjo and has drawn nicely in barrier four. He should get a good chance to lead as he likes to do and will find this race much easier than his last start where he ran at Listed level and couldn’t quite match it in that grade. While he hasn’t had much success on the Morphettville main track over his career, if he can get a soft lead out in front, he might prove hard to catch.
Raquel Clark was the talk of the town last Saturday when she claimed five wins on the card, including taking out last week’s Spring Bonanza Final with Amberdi. This Saturday she’ll join forces with Chantelle and Richard Jolly’s who she rode a winner for last weekend with Heaven’s Deal. The Jolly’s won the first Spring Bonanza Final with Schilldora and will be out to claim their second $100k race this series. Irish Mint returns from Port Lincoln where he won his last start by 4.7 lengths in BM80 grade. A natural leader, he’ll be looking to battle out the lead with Just a Bigger Dash and while he’s got plenty of speed, the 1100m may be a slight concern, with five of his six career wins coming over 1000m. Still, he’ll be given every chance with a red-hot Clark in the saddle.
Other chances in the $100k feature include Jon O’Connor’s Akkacan who makes his own luck on the speed and has been knocking on the door of a win lately with three placings in his last four starts, while Street Life was an eye-catching run at Murray Bridge on Cup Day over 900m. The five-year-old has won second up and he’ll have no problems getting the extra 200m on Saturday.