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On the ‘Crest’ of a successful wave?
Ventura Crest looks a genuine back-end ‘special’ in the opening Nursery Handicap over a mile of ‘good to soft’ Pontefract today, just the type for experienced Nortern-based trainer, Tim Easterby, to exploit on the back of a surprise ‘career-best’ effort last month.
Following five moderate attempts Tim was doubtless resigned to finding the lowest grade selling grade race for Ventura Crest but journeyed the Elzaam gelding to Redcar twenty-six days ago for an eight furlongs handicap; a starting price of 33/1 raised no eyebrows but ex-computer champion, David Allan, adopted positive tactics immediately.
Ventura Crest led a sole rival on the far side, well away from seventeen others and they showed ahead entering the final furlong only to be caught in the last stride by Echo, another outsider with a 25/1 chance third. Bookmakers smiled and, you can imagine, so did Tim!
BHA handicapping increased Ventura Crest to a 58 rating, 3lbs less than his best mark back in July.
Exploitation is all about seizing the moment and Easterby will utilise the 3lbs claim of his talented apprentice, Rachel Richardson. A significant advantage given this represents a tough stamina test for juveniles on such a stiff track. Ventura Crest had previously been campaigned at lesser distances!
On the time-handicap Ventura Crest represents a solid each-way proposition, so do Sioux Frontier in the following Novice Auction Stakes over six furlongs and Sienna Says at ‘soft’ Windsor.
Sioux Frontier shaped well on his Redcar debut earlier this month and Richard Fahey will be expecting this Excelebration colt to go close against moderates.
Sienna Says is clear ‘best-in’ for a Novice Median Auction Stakes over five furlongs and, significantly, shrewd trainer, Tony Carroll, has conscripted services of ‘crack’ apprentice, Manuel Fernandes, claiming 5lbs; don’t oppose.