Logical Longshots MM day 16/01

Hard not to have a go on a raceday which has some depth and value odds. That said it we often see some very unpedictable results here so the confidence levels are not high especially when you are struggling to find winners of late.

R3 I BB’d COMMANDER BELL (Each Way) off his Grafton Cup run at 2350m some time ago. He was massive odds that day and was 2L off Sixties Groove and beat home Primitivo and quite a few good horses. He hasn’t run past a mile in 6 starts since so I haven’t backed him at all. A few starts prior to Grafton he beat Kirwan’s Lane who has some decent form in recent times. I think you have to forgive the last run of this horse on a Heavy 8 track and he steps up 800m which should be fine given his fitness levels. Not saying he is a super winning hope but at $70 or so and meeting Primitivo ($7) 1.5kg for beating him home at Grafton he should be respected. He didn’t actually have the best of luck from the 400m on at Grafton either.

R6 MISS HIPSTAR (Each Way) looks the value play to me coming out of an extremely fast 2yo race last week. A Gold Coast seven day backup has been such a successful lead in to this race in recent years and from what I can gather only Sunlight has run a faster time in one of those lead ups. And only marginally quicker on a drier surface. That obviously makes SWIFT WITNESS very hard to beat from a good draw but this filly was 3 wide the whole race last week and meets the winner 4kg better. SHE’S ALL CLASS makes up my Tri given she thrashed SW in reasonably good time at Wyong prior.

R9 XANTHUS (Each Way) is a bit hit and miss and would need to put in his absolute best effort to win here. He does have two wins over Fisticuffs though, can run good time and the last win was here where he came home the last 600m in around 32.80. His second last run in Sydney wasn’t too bad with 61kg beating home Regal Stage and Bombasay who have both won races since. I’d have preferred 1200m and a run under his belt, but he has had two runs trials in preparation off only a 3 month break. He also need a sensible ride to sit behind the pace and not on it. I probably shouldn’t be tipping it but it’s hard to resist @ $31 in a weak race from a good barrier. All things being equal YAMAZAKI probably wins this and she certainly does if she repeats the performance on this day last year. She has placed in a Group 3 race since and still sits on the minimum today. Barrier 1 could be a curse but Glen Boss knows her well now. The speed looks solid so I feel she is the one you have to save on.

Ascot R8 WHY CHOOSE HER (Win) is very close to double figure odds and I was keen on her at the weights against Indian Pacific last start only to see her rocket home from a long way back to just miss beating that horse. Today she gets 100m more and meets that horse 2kg better. A close watch on MERVYN who meets Indian Pacific 4kg better for a narrow defeat the last time they met. Had this been 1000m and not 1100m I’d be keen and the wide barrier makes things tougher for him. But he will probably lead and could take some catching. He was scratched vs these other two last time and that didn’t help the cause of WCH at all. She should run a bold race today and any rain would be a massive bonus. That is probably not likely though.

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Kingston Town Stakes and Logical Longshots 5/12

Below is some historical referencing I did for this race yesterday in regard to the three year olds in particular. Five of the last 11 editions have fallen to that age group, and one of those didn’t contain a three year old so the ration is actually 50% which is very significant. And if they don’t win they very often run a placing.

Kingston Town Stakes (3yo) history

2019 Kay Cee (1) second WA Guineas

2018 Arcadia Queen (6) first WA Guineas

2017 Pounamu (8) sixth Railway Stakes- 3yo’s Achernar Star 3rd, Perfect Jewel 4th, Money Maher 7th.

2016 Stratum Star (1) second  59kg Sandown 1500m (30 days). No 3yo’s ran.

2015 Perfect Reflection (12) Heavy track. 1st WA Champion Fillies.

2014 Moriarty (1) – 3rd Railway Stakes. 3yo Disposition 2nd (13) only three year old to run was second in WA Guineas.

2013 Ihtsahymn (2) 1st WA Guineas.

2012 Playing God- (5) 14th beaten 9.25L in Railway Stakes. only 3yo King Saul ran third off his WA Guineas win

2011Playing God– (8) 1st Aquanita  3yo Listed 1800m

2010 Sniper’s Bullet– (16) 1st Railway Stakes. 3yo God Has Spoken 2nd (off Aquanita 1800m win) Thorn Dancer 4th off 1500m 3yo win.

2009 Niconero- (14) 4th Railway Stakes. Grand Nirvana only 3yo ran 8th after running 4th in WA guineas.

Analysis;

No doubt the horse they all have to beat here is the favourite INSPIRATIONAL GIRL who was ultra impressive winning the Railway Stakes in fast time. But, I think this is harder for her at WFA (giving weight to three year olds) and her wide barrier probably necessitates that she will have to settle back further in the field than last time. Her current price represents no value to me whatsoever although she clearly deserves favoritism at a bit better than $3 quote in my opinion. TOO CLOSE THE SUN has been a revelation and gets his chance to turn the tables on the aforementioned off a better draw than last time. He had to come back in distance last start and gets to a more suitable distance this time. He will take some running down but he too has to spot a lot of weight to the younger brigade. My initial preference was with DOM TO SHOOT who probably should have won the three year old Guineas. He was held up before the turn and rocketed home late. 1800m looks suitable off that effort and he should get a more favourable tempo this time. Having said that I think the filly WATCH ME DANCE has beaten him home three times now and had to back up to win the Guineas last start off a Heavy track win the previous week in the Fillies classic. What was noticeable in both those wins was how ‘kindly’ she travelled on both occasions and although neither win was by a big margin, she was able to get the job done. Given those performance I feel she will run the distance out and her overall form isn’t inferior to the likes of Arcadia Queen, Perfect Reflection or Kay Cee, In fact she has had more experience than all three leading in here with 11 starts for 5 wins. I’m leaning her way at an $11 price in comparison to the $7.50 for the Colt. Outside of those I thought UNITME represented good value off his excellent run behind Inspirational Girl in the Railway Stakes. He came from last there and was the only horse to make ground on her at the finish. It was a good sign he was hitting the line hard there. The other one I don’t mind at an even better price is NEUFBOSC. He has found some form out west, should be better suited at this distance and would be just about favourite in this race if he could recapture his best European form. That is around the likes of Kew Gardens and (indirectly) Cross Counter. His stablemate KAY CEE should maybe be forgiven her last start effort too. She is better off at the weights this time and her trainer is one of the best at turning form around and peaking them on the big day. I have then in this order’

  1. WATCH ME DANCE
  2. DOM TO SHOOT
  3. INSPIRATIONAL GIRL
  4. NEUFBOSC

That gives me one Logical Longshot for the day, and I’ll name another in R7 VALOUR ROAD. I’m surprised he is still at an $8-$8.50 quote given he probably would have won the Winterbottom Stakes last week had he got clear in the straight. He should be like a coiled spring here after that, and I just can’t understand how Celebrity Queen is $2 ( compared to his $8) even though she beat him home last start. She is yet to even run beyond 1400m, and whilst I’d prefer 1200m for Valour Road, he at least he ran a close second in this race last year.

Rosehill R6 KARMAZONE– I have to go again with him at the price today meeting the winner Accountabilty 2.5kg better for last start. He also meets Significance similarly at the weights for beating it home. Why is it $6 and this horse $16? Winona Costin might have taken the wrong option last start as well going to the rails. I’m hoping she comes to the outside today. $3.75 a place in a 9 horse field so I think we should go Each Way here.

Ascot R9- OCEANS FIFTEEN- Not really sure I should be going to this race as it’s one of the worst of the day (last leg of Quaddie!), but I think he is one of the main chances, and is definitely twice the price he should be given he meets Angelic Miss 2kg better for beating her home two starts ago. 1200m is clearly his best distance and the Blinkers go back on today coming back in distance 200m. There should be enough speed for him and whilst Dark Mission appears as the one to beat it, is just way too short in price today. It will go close on it’s trial win but her first up win last preparation wasn’t that impressive, although it turned out to be quite a good form race. It is drawn awkwardly here as are a few other good chances. A few in this are also not racing at their best distance. Not the Blinkers going back on a Redoute’s Choice offspring as was the case for Rock Magic last week for the same stable. At $9 this horse represents the big value in the race from an ideal barrier.

Logical Longshots 28/11

I’m probably guilty of not looking at enough races today but have managed to come up with three at decent odds that I think can run a decent race;

Moonee Valley R9 LEITER– Did the job for us first up and kept fresh could repeat second up here. The key to his chances are the ride. If the apprentice chases the speed (there is plenty of it) then he has very little hope in reality. It needs to be an identical ride to his only win here when he was midfield and tracked wide into the straight to score a gutsy win. Hard to ignore that form he had behind Gytrash and Halvorsen which is the big reason why I was keen first up. He is $9 and $9.50 this morning so an odds boost will get you well into double figures.

Ascot R9 (Winterbottom) ROCK MAGIC is an 11 year old but is still racing with some zest and the Blinkers go on here. It’s hard to see the Perth horses beating the class horse Trekking if he runs his best race so my thinking is that if this old boy can find a length or two he will be right in the finish here. He doesn’t have to improve too much given he beat Trekking home in this last year, and he meets most of the locals better at the weights for last start. Two 9 year olds have won this race so it’s not an impossible task for him if those Blinkers do the trick. It is six and a half years since he wore them and they weren’t on for long (3 starts for one win). He is better than $20 odds at present and that’s not too bad considering he is at least on a par with the other locals at his best. Here is an article from our friends at Punters.com.au which is very encouraging and I feel it necessitates a small investment on him today Each Way. https://www.punters.com.au/news/11yo-produces-best-ever-gallop-ahead-of-g1_194820/

Ascot R10 HARRY THOMAS– Looks to be going just ordinary at the moment but I don’t mind his last run on an unsuitable wet track and the claim appears to bring him right into this race. Amazingly with 56.5-57.5kg his record reads 5-6/12. Carrying more or less weight his stats are horrendous. They suggest that carrying this weight in this class gives him a very good chance. This is his best distance and it looks as though he can lead and give a bit of cheek out front. I did originally like a couple of others in this race with a 3kg claim (Kelly’s Callisto and Big Shot Paddy) but neither has really been finding the line of late and Harry is probably as well in as those two with his 56.5kg after the claim. Not overly confident but the $16 odds are very enticing Each Way.

Logical Longshots 21/11

No good whatsoever last week but that’s the way it goes. I can only point out the obvious which should result in a good performance, but when they race below expectations it’s hard to explain why at times. Some people might have benefitted off an Each Way bet on Asiago (wasn’t recommended), but her failure to really hit the line after a perfect run in transit was symptomatic of my day.

Anyway, on to today and we live in hope. Going far and wide with a few at good prices. Unfortunately I won’t see any of these races until at least 5pm but will hopefully get to see the big races in Perth and Singapore live.

Kembla R3- KARMAZONE gets Winkers on first time here. He has been running very well without really finding the line late so I’m hoping they make a big difference. He is capable and also very honest. The evidence of that is 11 career starts and yet to be beaten more than 3.1L. He meets Kirwin’s Lane 5kg better for a 1.70L defeat two starts back and that same horse 10kg better for a half length defeat back in April. EACH WAY all day I feel @ $17 and $4.50 a place.

R5 SNEAK PREVIEW was awful last start in town but the start prior finished like a rocket behind Jailbreak at Dubbo, and I had to Blackbook him off that performance. He is 1/1 here and I think you just have to forgive that last effort and concentrate on his fresh stats which are excellent. First up three starts back he comfortably beat his stablemate Fast Talking who won a race in town a couple of weeks ago. He’s going to need to put in a career best effort but I don’t want to let him go around at better than $20 Each Way.

Ballarat R8 KIWIA– How can you not back this horse today? He did us an enormous favour winning this race last year at $16 and he is twice that price this time around. He is going for a threepeat in this race today and is also going for 5/5 at the track. He has only won two races since this time three years ago and they have been here at his home track. John Allen hasn’t been aboard since this race last year and has a 4-1/6 record on him. He also has a gear change of Visors on and Winkers off coming into this. You just have ignore his last effort where he pulled up lame and he hates Flemington anyway (0-1/8). The previous run was surprisingly good. His last four runs have been in exactly the same races as last year. That in itself is an achievement by the trainer. The negative is the wide barrier, but looking at some of his form I’m not sure he appreciates drawing in too close anyway. The weight of 59.5kg is 3kg more than last year but the minimum weight has been raised at least 2kg. Each Way @ $23 and $6. I’m on @ $61 and $11!

Perth R8 KEMENTARI– Can’t believe I’m doing this as I’m doubtful he can actually win (see Railway Stakes preview), but @ $15 from barrier 1 off a good lead up run it’s hard not to recommend at least an Each Way investment. It makes no sense at all that he is that price and Kay Cee is $6 looking at their last meeting. He may well have beaten her with a better run in transit. Then there is the Tongue Tie gear change today. He has only worn one once for a 4L+ victory. It could also be a masterstroke to have given him the one run here as most Eastern States visitors do find it hard to win here at their first try. Having said all that I am pretty keen on the favourite Inspiration Girl too. Her owner did point out that he is the horse to beat which is promising.

Kranji (Singapore) R10 BIG HEARTED– Looks a great chance in this with a light weight which is what normally wins this race, one I have had great success with over the years. I know this horse and backed him last start to win, and he did so with a resolute finish at his first go beyond a mile. Prior to that he was 2L off Inferno at level weights and it is the best horse in Singapore. I think he gets a 1kg claim here which means he only has 49kg to carry. The barrier however is of some concern, though he does tend to get back in his races anyway. His name is apt as he is a very honest horse with a career record of 5-3/11. Win Only at current price of $9.50 which seems very good value to me.

Good luck to all of you having a bet today.

RAILWAY STAKES 2020

Below are the last Nineteen winners of this excellent mile race which is always one of my favourites on the Australian calendar. Hence the preview, which is always a tough ask!

2019 REGAL POWER (13) 53kg

2018 GALAXY STAR 6M (2) 53kg

2017 GREAT SHOT 5G (8) 53.5kg

2016 SCALES OF JUSTICE 4G (8) 53kg

2015 GOOD PROJECT 4H (11) 53kg

2014 ELITE BELLE 6M (12) 53.5kg

2013 LUCKYGRAY 6G (12) 58kg

2012 MR MOET 5G  (4) 53.5KG

2011 LUCKYGRAY 4G (12) 53KG

2010 GATHERING 4G (6) 52KG

2009 SNIPER’S BULLET 6G (12) 56.5KG

2008 GILDED VENOM 4G (9) 52KG

2007 EL PRESIDENTE 4G (4) 55.5KG

2006 BELLE BIZARRE 5M (6) 54KG

2005 COVERTLY 4M (2) 51KG

2004 MODEM 6G (7) 55KG

2003 HARDRADA 4G (13) 54KG (Race staged at Belmont).

2002 OLD FASHION 5G (1) 54.5KG

2001 OLD COMRADE 4G (8) 53.5KG

2000 NORTHERLY 4G (12) 51KG

These are the most pertinent historical statistics;

  1. 14/18 have carried less than 55.5kg to win, and 14/16 carried less than 56.5kg. 2007 winner El Presidente carried 55.5kg but was only 0.5kg over the minimum that year. 9 of the last 10 winners have carried 53.5kg or less. The only one not too was the dual winner Luckygray in 2011 and 2013, He had also run second in 2012 carrying 58kg.Nine of the last Ten winners have carried 53.5kg or less to win.
  2. 16/18 dropped in weight from their prior start, and 14/16 didn’t rise in weight. The average weight drop over this period is roughly 3kg. No horse has won rising more than 1kg off it’s last start
  3. 13/18 have been either 4 or 5 years of age, and only 2 horses have won beyond 6 years of age since 1989. 4yo’s have won 10 of the last 20, and 17 of the past 39.
  4. The Lee Steere Classic and RJ Peters Stakes have produced 11 of the past 18 winners. Of the others- Mr Moet was first up. Sniper’s Bullet, Gathering and Good Project came via Melbourne through albeit different races, and Luckgray, Galaxy Star and Regal Power came through the Asian Beau Stakes so it’s two winners in a row coming out of that race with the same trainer/Owner.
  5. 16/18 placed in the first 4 at their prior start, and all bar one of those has been a WA galloper. 28 winners since 1985 finished 1st, 2nd or 3rd at their prior start. Stick with an in form galloper!  2 of the 3 Eastern States winners in recent times were well beaten at their previous start (Sniper’s Bullet & Gathering)
  6. 11/17 have won from barriers 1-9, and 17/18 from barriers 1-13. Oddly six of the past Twelve winners have come out of barrier 11,12, and 13 (four from barrier 12) as did Northerly in 2000. Providing the horse has the early pace to get across to lead, or be on the pace early a wide barrier is no disadvantage, the perfect example being Good Project winning in 2015. Either that or your horse needs to drop out to the tail early (Luckygray twice, and Elite Belle). Caught midfield off a wide barrier here is almost always fatal, and getting the speed map right for this race is crucial
  7. 4 of the past 18  winners had run in this race in one of the past two years. 3 of those had been runner up.
  8. 6 of the past 9 winners have come from a midfield or worse position to win, which is a total reversal for this race which was largely dominated by on pace horses (or those sitting on pace to midfield) in the decade prior.
  9. 16/18 had raced in Perth at some stage before winning. Gathering in 2010, and Good Project in 2015 are the only one’s not to have done so. Gathering got a soft lead off a very suitable (for him) 27 day break leading in, and GP also raced right on the pace.
  10. Only 3 Stallions had won the race in the past 27 years. Good Project broke the drought in 2015, with the previous being Island Morn in 1994.
  11. Average winning price is around $10 and that is consistent with results over more than a 20 year period.
  12. Only 4 mares have won in the past 18 years, and all three have been aged  5 to  6.The positive is that two have won in the past six editions, both 6 year old mares from the same stable and owned by Bob Peters (famous pink and white).
  13. 3 of the past 15 winners (but 3 of last 11)  have come from the Eastern States. All have been Sydney trained and came out of a last start Spring carnival run in Melbourne. And all have been on pace runners.

Summing up the ideal historical candidate would be;4 to 6 years of age, B) finished in the first 4 placings last start, C) Carrying less than 55.5kg and preferably less than 53.5kg  D) Coming from a barrier no wider than 13, E) had alead up run in the Lee Steere, RJ Peters or Asian Beau (more recently) and F) be dropping in weight preferably 2.5kg or more. G) Preferably be a Gelding or Mare. Finding one with all these pre requisites at close to or at a double figure quote would be ideal.

Speed Map;

It does appear that the race has enough pace in it to suggest a truly run affair with the likes of Gailo Chop, Too Close The Sun, Red Can Man, Great Shot and Dance Music (probably sits just off pace) engaged. Of those mentioned RCM and Great Shot have more options having drawn in closer. TCTS and GC are going to have to burn some fuel early to cross the others. If not the risk is they get caught too wide and ruin their chances. That should set the race up for a midfield backmarker type to swoop home late.

Looking at the historical info, it would seem we have three clear chances in RED CAN MAN, TOO CLOSE THE SUN & INSPIRATIONAL GIRL. I’m not entirely confident the race is going to be run to script this year though. Had a very well credentialed Eastern States horse come here in winning form it might have been a case of the trophy going in that direction. As it is we still have two realistic hopes coming from that direction in the shape of KEMENTARI and GAILO CHOP. Both have run here in the past which should be a bonus. Neither horse has won a race since March 2018. In the case of Kementari it does seem almost longer than that to be honest.

Analysis;

I don’t want to go too in depth here but do want to present a few facts on those I give a winning chance to;

  1. KEMENTARI is much maligned which is understandable given his propensity to not win. If he lived up to his looks he would win any race and the reports are he is absolutely gleaming right now and is enjoying his new environment. Swap the runs between he and the winner Kay Cee at his first start here two weeks ago and he probably wins that race (assuming he had the ticker!). Barrier 1 could be a massive asset for him providing he can utilise it at the right time. Historically it’s a no, but this isn’t the hardest edition of this race and his best form would certainly win it. The addition of a Tongue Tie could also bolster his chances. He has only worn one once which resulted in a four length win. I hate backing topweighted horses in handicaps, and he has to give some weight away to horses he met last start, but if he gets all favours and is in the mood, he can win. I’m struggling to understand the $15 available as he seems a better hope than that to me. I’d have him at half that price $7.50.

3. GAILO CHOP– I’m giving him a hope merely on his run two starts back and his overall class. He seems very well in with 57kg with only 4kg over the limit weight. His trial win here recently was excellent in a decent time and he does meet the mare Kay Cee 8kg better for a 0.65L defeat in the Kingston Town (1800m) here last year. Yes she is a year older which is fair enough but I still feel it’s worth mentioning. He only needs to repeat that effort to be competitive here. Being ten years old and drawing so wide do seem negatives though. I’d rate him at about a $16 chance but he is twice that on one betting chart I saw just now. I did utilise a Free Bet on him @ $26 and now I’m wishing I’d waited.

4. KAY CEE– I’m actually risking her in this meeting the likes of Red Can Man and Platoon so much worse off at the weights for last start, and she meets Kementari on similar terms. And historically a 4yo mare carrying 56kg to win looks a very big ask. Had she drawn better them maybe you’d have to seriously consider her as the winner but that isn’t the case. The fact she is suited by the distance is a bonus though, and it’s hard to say she cannot win. For me she is unders though and I’d price her @ $8.50.

6. TAXAGANO– I wouldn’t say a definite no to his chances but he needs to find a few lengths. At the weights he doesn’t look too badly off and perhaps the back up last time didn’t suit. He does meet Kay Cee 1.5kg better for beating her three starts back and 3.5kg better off for a 2.87L defeat behind her last start. One for Multi Players perhaps. $25

8. RED CAN MAN– Does looks a great chance at the weights meeting Kay Cee some 5kg better for two narrow defeats in the past twelve months or so. A 6kg weight drop surely helps him here, and he shouldn’t have to do too much work from a good barrier. It could be argued he has been a little disappointing of late, but on the other hand he has been consistent and has had a great preparation. My biggest concern for him is the distance as he reminds me a bit of The Velvet King last year who seems to just lack the class to win at this distance against this class of horse. Kay Cee does seem to have the upper hand on him at a mile and Inspirational Girl also finished all over the top of him two starts ago over 1400m. I know The Winterbottom (1200m) was another option for him too but at WFA he might struggle in that race. A 1400m handicap with this weight would have been perfect, as would a bit less pace in this race. He is definitely a winning chance but I think the current price of around $9 is about right for him.

11. INSPIRATIONAL GIRL– She looks the one to beat with her 8/10 strike rate, current form, historical references and from a good barrier, with William Pike aboard. The pace of the race should suit her and she is 2/2 at this track and distance. I also like the fact she has been savaging the line in two recent wins which is also a good sign. Red Can Man meets her 2kg better for close to a length defeat but I feel she has him covered her with ordinary luck at the extra distance. And given that form reference I think she probably has Kay Cee covered too carrying 3kg less. Noticeably she has missed the start at her past two outings which is some concern, and her class could be slightly questionable. I can’t quite have her as short as $3.60, but I’d put her up as a $4 favourite and the most likely winner off a good preparation.

13. PLATOON– He ran a blinder in this last year running third coming in off a slightly better (and longer) preparation. There was nothing wrong with his first up run when well weighted (I was on at a big price) but then he was safely held at WFA last start. The 6kg weight drop helps because he isn’t a huge horse and a wider barrier might (similar to last year) should too. He boasts a win over Regal Power in his younger days and a 1 length second to Arcadia Queen also which is winning form for this. The negative is he can be a bit unreliable. This might be a shade easier race to win than last year so he could provide somewhat of a shock, and unlike Red Can Man (who beat him last start) he is proven at the distance. $9 is my price but you can do better than that.

14. TOO CLOSE THE SUN– No doubting he is a very good horse(super winning strike rate) and he has backed up off a 7 day break to win before. He does come into his off an obscure win over 1800m though which has historical precedent, and is yet to win below 1700. Having said that he nearly beat the favourite for this first up two starts ago at 1400m. His Dam won an Oaks and a Derby her winning 5 from 12 and he is a half bother to the Mackinnon Stakes winner Trap For Fools. He has drawn a bit awkwardly here and was entitled to win last week on the wet track but he did win with consumate ease there and can easily win this with the right run. Given his toughness and now superior fitness he could also overcome covering extra ground and win this. Hard to deny him as a leading chance here and I’d price him @ $6.50. At the moment he looks a bit under the odds given the other pace he might have to contend with up front.

15. TRULY GREAT– Here is another horse with an outstanding winning strike rate who looked awesome winning last week. He has also won backing up off a 7 day break in the past. He probably didn’t beat much last week though and it appears Chris Parnham has jumped off to ride Kementari. Couple that with a very wide barrier draw (too wide?) and his chances have probably taken a hit. William Pike would also have had the option to ride him too, although that decision was probably taken a few weeks ago. I still think he could win though given the right run in transit and definitely deserves serious place consideration. His price is probably realistic at present given the negatives around him. $12.

Summing up;

I’m with 1. INSPIRATION GIRL who has so much in her favour, though admittedly the value around her is questionable. Perhaps I’m being a little greedy in demanding $4? I’ll put 2. Kementari in for second purely from a value perspective and that gear change. 3. Platoon may well run a place again at shorter odds this year and 4. Too Close The Sun has an undeniable chance but might be slightly unders at the moment. Red Can Man is a must for multis though and Gailo Chop could be the big surprise packet at juicy odds. Hard to have him in my top four chances though from where he has drawn.

Logical Longshots

Hard to pull up stumps when you are going alright but in theory it’s going to be quite a bit harder to find realistic double figure hopes in the weeks ahead. I’ve managed to do that today, but as always I’m never confident. I do think these are well over the prices they should be though. The start of the Perth carnival is just around the corner and we have a rare wet track to deal with today at this time of the year.

Sandown R8 GAME OF THORNS is drifting out in the market which is a bit of a worry but I can’t fathom how Missile Mantra (though hard to beat) is $3.80 opposed to her @ $11 given one finished in front of the other last start. And this mare is better drawn. Both fillies raced in that strong form race at Kembla during the Spring and there was nothing between them there either. Worth a shot at the price and horse’s like Shout The Bar and All Saint’s Eve have made the Kembla form look good in recent times. Interestingly Akari also ran in that same race and has very similar formlines. Could they run the Trifecta here?

Newcastle R7 ASIAGO also ran in that Kembla race last Autumn and was very unlucky behind Shout The Bar last start at Flemington. She drops to a very light weight here and those formlines do look solid enough to give her a good chance here against all comers. Her barrier is not ideal and it’s going to take a deft ride from Kathy O’Hara here to get her home. Her price has now firmed to $9.50 off the $13 I took this morning. If backing her now I’d want to be taking Best Price and hope for the best because that is borderiine value.

Ascot R3- MUM’S MY HERO is a pretty decent Adelaide horse coming to Perth for the first time which is never easy. Few come over with the consistent form he possesses and his trial against strong opponents recently was more than adequate. He finished alongside Neufbosc there who ran well over there first up. Importantly this horse is 3/3 first up so it’s still mystifying to me that he is $13 in the market with a career record of 6-3-3/15. Surely he should be half that price? The track will borderline on Heavy and he has won on that surface. The claim might be vital given the conditions.

R8 MANKIND although in a class that would normally be just beyond him he gets his chance off a decent first up run where he meets the winner 2kg better. He is 1/1 on Heavy going and could lead today from barrier 1 (he had to go back last start fron barrier 9). On wet tracks overall he is 5/8 and on dry tracks he is 1/22! Even better the Blinkers go back on today and the first time they were applied he did win on a Heavy track when leading. His mother Avenida Madeiro was a high class mare who also won on a Heavy (10) track. He just looks a real must for Each Way backers today @ $51 and the more rain the better I’d say.

Sandown R4 (upcoming). I don’t mind both Vainstream and Tony Nicconi here at big prices but found it impossible to choose between the two so left both out today. I still think I have to give them a mention though. Both need it dry and the former needs to recapture his form where he beat home Humma Humma in the Oakleigh Plate in the Autumn. And there is a huge disparity in price between those two today. The latter actually meets Human Nature 6kg+ better today for a narrow defeat last start yet he is twice the price of that horses. The danger is both would need to be at their absolute best to beat these today.

Looing like a 5 unit play today at current prices. Good Punting to all.

Logical Longshots 7/11

It’s been quite a trial to settle on these runners today but I may as well have a go given last weeks decent results. What a mess with nobody able to bet with TAB atm. Personally I’ve had just about enough of them for several reasons.

Flemington R6 ZOUTORI appeals to me especially if you can get my required $4 a place. He has been kept fresh for this and others have been in Sydney or travelled there and back. This horse is yet to win with less than three weeks between runs but has a 50% strike rate with more days than that. He also seems to have a dislike for wet tracks these days so the dry track is a bonus. I’d prefer to have seen him draw out a bit but his overall record barriers 4+ is admirable and much better than his 0/5 barriers 1-3. He is yet to win at G1 level but if he is ever going to do it today will be the day. The race seems to have genuine speed with Nature Strip, Fabergino and Hey Doc engaged. I am backing him and the latter horse who I would also have preferred to draw out further.

R8 SHOUT THE BAR can get a soft lead here if required and @ $13 she represents a little bit of overs too. Not sure the backup is ideal but the Blinkers went on last start and she showed a massive improvement, strong on the line suggesting 2000m might suite today. At her best she beat Probabeel at 2000m and she would be close to favourite had she been in this race.

R9 LEITER resumes today at an ideal distance I feel. He boasts a half length third to Gytrash and Halvorsen at 1000m down the straight. Although some time ago that is enormous form for this and the wide barrier is probably going to be a bonus. It wasn’t a bad prep last time and I remember the stable saying they have a good opinion of him. And they normally manage to train a winner at this carnival. He looks a good Each Way play to me @ $21 or so.

Rosehill R4 PECUNIARY INTEREST is a horse I’ve had quite a bit of luck with and last time seemed to show that he is exclusively a wet tracker. That was a poor effort on a dry track but he has shown a serious turn of foot on this sort of surface before. I’m not that keen at the weights against the favourite here but just hopeful he is a better wet tracker. It’s hard for me to let him go around @ $27 with a 4-1/6 record on wet tracks. If he can’t race well today then perhaps he is just a provincial horse but I’m willing to invest a little to find out. Each Way.

Melbourne Cup 2020

I’m really struggling to get into this race yet I have been looking at it off and on for the past two weeks. A 29 degree forecast tomorrow does have me pondering further that this preview is even worthwhile given the Imports might find that a bit suffocating . Anyway a brief look at some historical factors that might influence some thoughts for tomorrow;

  1. It’s very hard to win this race with more than 57.5kg and in the last five years no horse has won with more than 53kg. Four of those have carried less than 53kg so it has reverted back to a typical handicap race where the horse’s with the most upside down lower in the weights tend to win.
  2. Northern Hemisphere three year olds have won two of the past three runnings and almost made it 3/3 last year with Il Paradiso very stiff not to win suffering interference over the concluding stages. He came from near last too in a moderately run race. an Australian trained 4yo won the race last year so the race has started to trend toward the younger horse after a period of dominance from older horses prior.
  3. The St.Leger run at Doncaster in England over 2922m has started to become a very useful guide to this race. Rekindling was unplaced in 2017 yet won this race. Cross Counter didn’t run in that race but two of the horses placed behind him prior went on to fill first and third place in it, CC went on to win the Melbourne Cup that year, Il Paradiso unplaced in the St. leger last year very nearly won this race last year. Not entirely revelant but SIR DRAGONET also ran in the same St.Leger as Il Paradiso last year and won the Cox Plate less than 2 weeks ago.
  4. Although an Entire (Stallion) hasn’t won since 2017 nine have won in the past fourteen years which is still quite a suprising statistic.
  5. Australian trained winners of this race almost always have good Flemington form beforehand.
  6. Wide barriers are rarely a disadvantage excepting when a horse gets too far back in a slowly run Cup,
  7. It is now fourteen years since a mare won and that was Makybe Diva (won of course won three in a row). That is a trend that is probably due to be broken.

Analysis;

Taking all that into account I’m mostly with the Irish 3yo TIGER MOTH here. He just failed to run down Santiago in the Irish Derby who then went on to run fourth in the Doncaster St. Leger. At his next start he thrashed some decent older rivals at the same distance on a different track, and it’s noticeable that the time was some five seconds faster. That was a true staying test and although he has had only the four runs, he looks to be improving rapidly and should run 3200m on that effort. The main problem is he has drawn wide and I’m not overly convinced this race is going to be run at a fast tempo to help his cause. Nevertheless I find it hard to not have him on top based on recent history and he is 2/2 undefeated on left handed tracks,

Originally I was with SIR DRAGONET because he is a high class horse who has just won our Premier WFA race, and you rarely see a horse with his current credentials run in this with no weight penalty. He meets the topweight AVD 3kg better for a length defeat in the English Derby and beat home Il Paradiso in that Doncaster St.Leger last year. That looks a great guide to this race but the consensus seems to be he needs a wet track, and he might not run the distance. I’m not convinced about the former but the latter does have me a bit worried. Is he too brilliant given he won the Cox Plate at 2040m, and did fade a bit late in that English Derby (2400m) and St.Leger (2992m)? He is easing dramatically in the betting and you can make a case right now that he is massively over the odds. Note also his form is far better on Left handed tracks (3-1/5)

ASHRUN appeals to me off his win on Saturday and the weight drop. The imported horses rarely cope with three runs in less than two weeks, but you just have to respect his trainer who has already won this with Protectionist (who carried a lot more weight). He self quarantined for two weeks in Sydney just to oversee the horse getting into this race and he duly did so coming from last in an unsuitably run race. No doubt at all the horse was underdone when being the eyecatching runner in the Geelong Cup (glue on shoes worn there). Had he drawn better I’d be a lot keener as he too needs a fast run race to bring him into the race from where he is going to be in running.

Two of the Aussie horse’s I don’t mind purely on a stats/odds basis are the following;

STEEL PRINCE– He is 9-7/21 on dry tracks and wasn’t beaten far in this race last year on a Soft 5. He overraced that day (was it the going), and hadn’t won a race coming in. He has this year. The other stat I like with him is he is only 3/15 in his first three runs of a preparation. Yet he is 6/9 at his fourth to seventh run in a preparation. He comes into this fifth up with his form steadily improving, and the formline through Ashrun now looks sound enough. He has beaten Suprise Baby a couple of times and I think his preparation into this is superior to that horse. He is more than five times the price here. The negative is a wide barrier and the penalty he received from the Geelong Cup. If anybody can produce a miracle though it’s his jockey William Pike. The horse also has a great record here.

MIAMI BOUND– I’ve really only woken up late to her. Beyond 2400m she is 2/2 and both have been very easy wins. She drops 3kg from a good win last start and she can handle all track conditions. She likes it here and it’s interesting that all her wins have come outside barrier 3 (0-1/4 barriers 1-3). 5-1/10 outside barrier 3. She should get room to move here and gets 2.5kg off Russian Camelot. I point that out because in the VRC Oaks she beat home a filly called Moonlight Maid by over five lengths. Russian Camelot had just over 6L to spare over her in the SA Derby so on that form there isn’t a great deal between the two, and one is a far more generous price. She nearly fell second up at Flemington from an inside barrier which only highlights the fact that drawing wide is a bonus. She could also race midfield or slightly more advanced which could be beneficial.

STRATUM ALBION– I find him an interesting runner because often we see the British horse that mixes Flat and Hurdle racing run well here in the Spring staying races when everything points to them being too dour. If you believe the stable they state that he needs a bone dry track and he hardly ever gets one in his homeland. Last start he beat home Nayef Road who finished in front of Il Paradiso and Sir Dragonet in the 2019 Doncaster St. Leger. That’s a good formline, and the MC handicapper has said he could have given this horse a Kilo more weight given his European rating. The trainer has also stated surprise at how fast he is right now in trackwork. What bothers me is his run in the Ebor in 2018 on a dry track in fast time was quite poor. He also tends to get back in his races and might be too old to win this. He looks the type that could run a place at big odds though.

Conclusion;

Obviously there are a host of great chances in the race and I’ve only touched on a few of them. I could make a case for all bar Mustajeer if I was to be honest. I’ve settled on this top five but I could be a mile off the mark;

  1. TIGER MOTH
  2. Sir Dragonet
  3. Steel Prince
  4. Miami Bound
  5. Asjhrun

Logical Longshots Derby Day

This might be the last throw at the stumps for me this Spring excepting a Melbourne Cup preview (with any luck). The last two postings have been a disaster but I guess the results have been profitable overall. Not a lot of confidence in these but only need one winner to show a profit;

Melbourne R4 BRIMHAM ROCKS did me a massive favour last year winning at $26 or so at his first Melbourne run that Spring. At the time I figured he was a 2-3 length better horse on left handed tracks and nothing since has really suggested otherwise. His form is good enough and you should get double figures in what is admittedly a very deep race. He isn’t in the Melbourne cup so it will be a real spoiler result if he does salute.

R9 ZANIAH is very speculative given it’s not well in at the weights but it seems she is a good fresh mare and just might run well down the straight given her sire won a Coolmore here, and her mother had a couple of placings down the straight. The form around Seasons/Haut Brion Her looks okay from a couple of starts back given the performance of the latter in The Everest recently. A wide barrier is nearly always a bonus down the straight and she has one. The speed should be on so she should be suited. A couple here might prefer a wet track but she is okay on any going. I’m actually a bit surprised she is as low as $20 in the market so Best Price is probably the best option. Strictly Each Way.

Randwick R6 COSTELLO needs to improve massively to win here but he drops in weight and importantly gets on a wet track again at a middle distance. He draws barrier 1 and has a 4-4/9 record from barriers 1-3 which is quite amazing given his overall career stats. And he goes alright at this track. Hopeful he can at least run a place @ $31.

R8 ALL SAINTS EVE is also very speculative but I just can’t let her go around at $40 or so. She has a bit of quality and is 2/2 on wet tracks (one on heavy). He sire was a wet track superstar and Icebath by the same sire in this same race won on a bog last start. I can’t rate this mare as inferior to Icebath (ASE beat her home one day) yet she is five times the price. She drew poorly last start and never got into the race but wasn’t that far off at the finish. Obviously this is very tough but she isn’t totally out of it. Each Way.

Newcastle R8 GUMSHOE has a good formline through Bring Glory (who did us a favour) a couple of starts back and goes well here. Last start it was 3-4 wide the whole race and beaten less than 4 lengths from a wide barrier. It probably covered that much extra ground and didn’t shirk the task in the straight. The form and weights through Sedition/Tim’s Principal should mean that the latter horse can’t get close, and the apprentice claim could be very handy. Comes into barrier 6 after the scratchings so has every hope to get a more economical run today. Win Only at the current price, and I hope double figures can be obtained (I got $10)

Logical Longshots 17/10

Massive day of racing today but I’ve found it hard to find anything at massive odds that really stands out. Just the one at a good price which is one of two in the Caulfield Cup;

Caufield R7 SHAMINO– Isn’t quite double figure odds but I managed to get an odds boost to $10 about her. She has a good strike rate and has beaten Garner the last two times they have met at level weights so why is he three points shorter in the betting? She was twice the price at one stage. There is a hot speed in this and admittedly Alfa Ora looks the one to beat so I’d be taking one unit a win and a one unit Quinella with him.

Caulfield R9 (Caulfield Cup) DALASAN looks the weighted horse meeting Verry Elleegant 4kg better for a narrow defeat in the Turnbull. He handles the wet and mimics his stablemate Southern Speed who ran fourth in the Turnbull Stakes and carried 52,5kg in this. William Pike aboard isn’t going to hurt. Each Way him given he is nearly $4 the place.

TRUE SELF might be the best of the Imports and very much forgotten in this race because of her recent form. I do like that stat of 6-2/8 in races between October-November and I may well have underestimated her ability on wet tracks given she is 6/10 on Soft. Should get a perfect run from the draw and carries 3kg less weight than she has ever done. Two runs here last Spring were excellent and it’s hard for me to ignore her at $30+ Each Way. Best value of the day from my point of view.

Not a race I’m at all confident about though as my preview on Thursday suggests. Just about any runner can win it.

Randwick R7 (Everest) LIBERTINI is $9 (unbelievably) and might drift in price. I just have to be with her again given she is 5/5 on dry tracks. She has recorded two sub par 1.08.00 times here at 1200m and if she does it again she is going to be very hard to beat. The barrier isn’t ideal but I’m hoping that common sense prevails from there and Regan Bayliss doesn’t chase the speed. She is built like a male horse and gets the weight advantage over nearly all of her rivals here. On the last run she should be favourite at half this price . The big query is can she back it up here, but the odds suffice to find out.

I’m also backing Gytrash who has a suspect record at 1200m but realistically in the Goodwood in Adelaide he was up on a hot speed off a wide barrier and Trekking got the gun run. Swap those runs and he wins the race Today he can follow the speed and have first crack topping the rise, and I love the fact he comes into this nice and fresh as that is how he races best. Expecting him to drift quite a bit in price.