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Australian Racing: Drums Of War tough to beat

There are seven meetings set to take place on Friday - including at Cranbourne where an eight-race card is scheduled.

Race 8 Cranbourne

Jessup @ 4.80

Race 5 Sunshine Coast

Drums Of War @ 6.50

Race 7 Geelong

Peri Peri Rich @ 4.20

Jessup for Cranbourne triumph

The finale at Cranbourne is a competitive looking 1300m Restricted 64 handicap set to take place on a soft 6 track.

Ciaron Maher’s Khor showed good form once switched to wet tracks in his first prep, including when runner-up twice on heavy 9 surfaces.

Those efforts included a one-and-a-half-length defeat when contesting a 14-runner 1620m maiden at Werribee in June last year.

The gelding duly went one better when successful by a length in similar conditions to those forecast here in a 1600m maiden event at Echuca the following month.

The four-year-old has been off the track since however, and he looks opposable dropping to a sprint on his first start of this season.

Shaun Mathrick’s gelding JESSUP is preferred on this occasion, with the pick having demonstrated that he handles wet tracks when placed at Geelong in October.

The son of Epaulette has demonstrated solid form since, including when breaking his maiden by a narrow margin in a 1209m contest on a good 4 track at Yarra Glen last month.

The selection proved that effort was no fluke, when racing and without cover prior to getting home by a narrow margin in a similar race to this over the same trip subsequently.

Apprentice Logan Bates, on board for both of those victories, is again set to ride and he looks capable of steering the selection to his third consecutive success.

War for Sunshine Coast success

The fifth race at Sunshine Coast is the most valuable contest of the day with 14 declared for a $100,000 1000m handicap restricted to three-year-old’s.

Nikita Berriman’s mount Bold Comic is set to shoulder top weight here, having shown solid form when runner-up in a small field course and distance event in November.

The gelding contested a Benchmark 62 handicap that day and registered a good effort when fifth in the Listed Channel 7 Gold Edition Plate at Eagle Farm next time.

However, the son of Whittington failed to shine at the same venue subsequently and is set to make his first start following a spell.

DRUMS OF WAR is another returning from a spell and he is selected to register his third win in four career starts.

The gelding suffered a defeat when runner-up over 900m at Newcastle on debut but has made amends with wins on both subsequent outings.

The first of those saw him make all the running to deliver a three length success in a 1005m maiden at Taree in September.

The pick jumped at short odds that day, with his rider having lost his whip in the previously mentioned Newcastle defeat.

Trained by Jason Deamer, the selection went on to score by a narrow margin in a Benchmark 64 handicap on his return to Newcastle in October.

All three of those efforts came on a good 4 track, however, he has shown form on soft going in barrier trials and is taken to salute on his first outing on a heavy surface.

Rich for Geelong glory

Trainer Michael Huglin sends out PERI PERI RICH in the penultimate race at Geelong.

The race in question is a 1200m Benchmark 58 handicap for fillies & mares and his representative has shown good form in placing second twice this prep.

Those two second place finishes sandwich a seventh of nine in a Restricted 64 handicap over 1000m at Pakenham last month.

The pick had an excuse that day having returned lame and she came within a length of making amends when runner-up at Bairnsdale on 24th March.

The six-year-old contested a Restricted 64 handicap over this distance on a good 4 track on that occasion with the ninth home that day registering a win subsequently.

Emily Pozman takes three kilograms off the mare's back and, with a decent alley in seven, the pair are selected to record a win here.

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