Commander Two a safe bet
HAVING kept his distance from carrying topweight in the recent Lotto Classic Governor's Cup, Guineas winner COMMANDER TWO faces older horses for the first time in tomorrow's open allowance, but still has conditions to his liking - a friendly distance and a modest 52.0 kilos.
Trainer Patrick Taylor appears to be merely keeping COMMANDER TWO race-sharp, opting for seven furlongs, a blowout ahead of the June 30 derby at 12 furlongs.
On paper, Taylor should get his wish, a morale-boosting win at an easy distance three weeks before the big one.
It is hard to go against Taylor's bay gelding, who has twice clocked 1:32.3 for seven and a half furlongs, his best effort being March 31 when he set splits of 23.2, 45.2 and 1:10.2, before hanging on by a diminishing three-quarter length from DRUMMER BOY, who took two races to frank that run by mauling the Lotto Classic field.
The handicaps are against two of three runners Wayne DaCosta has fielded - ARMAGEDDON and LOTTERY TICKET, at 56.5 and 56.0 kilos, respectively.
The champion trainer's third horse, RADICAL, may be on a roll, hunting a fourth straight win, but is up in class and sitting level with speed demon COMMANDER TWO.
BIRDIE MY LOVE and BILINGUAL, both reporting off wins, are at the bottom of the scale but also up in class, a few pounds off COMMANDER TWO, the controlling speed, at a distance which won't give them a chance to take him out of his game plan.
Non-claiming apprentice Javaniel Patterson won't have two decisions to make, but it will be a different kettle of fish, at 12 furlongs, come Derby Day.