Two runners, Sir Elton and Pandemic, in the $125,000 Mark Alati Bookmakers Bm 78 Handicap (1100m) at Randwick on Saturday are separated by a year’s age but have remarkably similar profiles with the market slightly preferring the younger Pandemic.
Adam Duggan’s Sir Elton, a four-year-old Your Song gelding, has raced just four times, as has Godolphin’s three-year-old Sepoy gelding Pandemic.
Sir Elton saluted three times in succession and finished his first rapidly rising campaign with a third in a Benchmark 764 over 1200m at Randwick on July 20th. Pandemic has won two and placed third in the last run of his spring in the listed Heritage Stakes over 1100m at Rosehill on September 28th.
That race was won by Standout who has recently impressed in two trials. Pandemic won his trial at Randwick on January 9th by 1 3/4L while Sir Elton won over 1000m at Wyong on January 13th.
On Saturday Sir Elton carries 58kg under Josh Parr with barrier four while Pandemic has 57kg under Tommy Berry with barrier one.
TAB’s opening market had Sir Elton at $3.40 with Pandemic at $4.20. However not for long though as support arrived in short order for the three-year-old and his price shortened into $3.70, then down to $3.00 before heavier punts, including $5,000 at $2.80 and $1,000 at $2.70, made him the favourite.
On Friday afternoon TAB had Pandemic at $2.80 and Sir Elton at $3.00.
The outcome of the market support for Pandemic will be decided at 5.40pm with the Benchmark 78 Race 8 on the nine race programme.
Pandemic and Tommy Berry, picture Sportpix.com.au