Dawkins, Subratie on a double
TRAINER Gary Subratie and jockey Dane Dawkins, a team with a 21 per cent win record from 77 mounts for the last year, look set to close the late double for owner Michael Bernard on Saturday after scoring a narrow victory with K D FLYER at five furlongs straight on Wednesday.
Subratie and Dawkins should first strike with run-on sprinter MY SISTER, who finally gets a good draw at five furlongs straight, stall seven in an eight-horse field, after breaking from the far rail and being twice beaten in races won by lightning-fast ADONIS out of the straight.
Dawkins replaces Robert Halledeen aboard Subratie's three-year-old maiden, SOUL CURE, a half-sister to SURE STEP, in the five-furlong round night pan, following the filly's disqualification from second, two Saturdays ago, behind SWEET LIKE SUGAR, beaten by only a head, after causing interference to RAW LIQUID near the three-furlong point.
A filly who consistently pays her keep, earning $3.2m from 25 lifetime starts, notching four wins, two second-place finishes and five third-place along the way - a near 45 per cent first-to-third strike rate - MY SISTER won her last two races in the space of two months, November last year and January 12 this season.
However, not being a specialist sprinter has had her at a disadvantage against quicker rivals whereas she is neither an in-and-out middle-distance runner, leaving her susceptible horses with sustained pace.
Though she won her last two races at middle distances, six and a half and seven furlongs, MY SISTER is versatile at five furlongs straight, finishing close-up to top sprinters such as stablemate NUCLEAR FLIGHT and ANOTHER VIGOROUS, plus her last two efforts against ADONIS.
On February 16, MY SISTER was definitely undone by the draw, dead against the far rail at post-position one in a 14-horse field, yet finished almost eight lengths fourth behind ADONIS, RAS EMANUEL and ZEPHYR. Drawn a little better against ADONIS on December 29, post-position four in an 11-horse field, she was third, beaten by two and three-quarter lengths.
Subratie has left nothing to chance, declaring MY SISTER with blinkers and cantering her in the equipment since Sunday for her to be acclimatised to the equipment, which she will wear for the first time.
TWILGHT DREAMS, DUNROBIN and ZEBRANO all possess speed but MY SISTER's last-furlong kick and relatively light impost, 116lb, should do the trick for Dawkins and Subratie.
Meanwhile, SOUL CURE, one of two Subratie runners in the night pan for fillies only, has been completely taken off speed gallops by her trainer, possibly due to her wiry frame. However, she showed up on debut, third behind ONE SOO TRUE at five furlongs round, followed by her disqualified second-place behind SWEET LIKE SUGAR at five and a half.
Subratie has made an equipment change, declaring a tongue tie, after the filly was only caught at the wire by SWEET LIKE SUGAR. Going a half-furlong shorter, she definitely gets the nod.