Logical Longshots 26/09

With the big Moonee Valley meeting last night (resulting in diluted fields) it’s been difficult to find double figure shots with a few things in their favour and it’s always hard to not try and just manufacture selections for the sake of it. I can only really justify these two horses at their respective odds and I’m breaking the Each Way rule a little on the first of them. Only $3.40 available at present but I think it’s the best play with favourite likely to win the race at odds on;

Rosehill R7 KING’S LEGACY– Did nothing at all really in the Run To The Rose leadup but it was a fast run race which really tested the fitness of those engaged. Apparently his sectionals had a lot of merit and the stable are masterful at getting young horses to peak in these G1 races. Importantly the horse is 2/2 first up, 2/2 beyond 1200m and 2/2 with Hugh Bowman aboard. Bowman was aboard Global Quest first up and that horse also rates a good Each Way chance I feel. It was a very odd decision to go to 1500m first up given that horse had never raced beyond 1200m before. He gave 1kg to a very good 3yo there and draws a better barrier here. Take note also that he has also beaten home North Pacific who is a four times lesser price today. Back to King’s Legacy though and worth remembering he carried 58.5kg first up and is one of few out of that race that doesn’t meet Rothfire worse off at the weights. The Rothfire-King’s Legacy/Global Quest Exacta might be worth a play here too

Belmont R8 FLOWER OF WAR– I just can’t let her go around here at $14+ with a 3/3 first up record and 6-2/8 stats at the distance. The two defeats have been by less than half a length and one of those was by Free Trade who is $4.80 here, and she meets him 1.5kg better at the weights. She should lead quite comfortably from a decent barrier and the horse most likely to bother her on pace (Massimo) has been scratched. Have to say it was a bizarre trial coming in where she was snagged back to a long last and wasn’t asked for much at all. The other trial prior up on the pace was a little disappointing. Hoping she is fit enough and her trials have been a bit of a smokescreen.

Logical Longshots 19/09

I’ve had major computer dramas this morning which has made it difficult to do my best work. Just going with the three at value today with one coming out of yesterday’s preview.

Caulfield R8 PRETTY BRAZEN admittedly doesn’t look great historically but I think she is generally underrated and has the form to win this. If she isn’t WFA quality then I think she is pretty damn close and is 2.5kg under WFA here. As I said in the preview had Arcadia Queen ran in this race with 54kg I’m pretty sure she would be favourite and realistically she had the better run in the race last week and was unable to run her down. I think she should be $7 or $8 and you can get double that for a horse that looks as if it might be able to back up off a seven day break and win.

Rosehill R8 GIRL TUESDAY has run two really good races since transferring to the stable of Clarry Connors and although she hasn’t won for a while she gets her chance today off an eyecatching run last start. I like the fact she has drawn a lot better than some of the other good hopes and cannot understand why she is $15 or so. Based on that last run she should be half that price and a Nose Roll goes on for the first time today. Dry tracks seem to be the key to her and she has placed in a decent race well beyond this distance. Hopefully Boss can ride her at 53kg this time which wasn’t the case last start when he claimed 1kg over.

Newcastle R7 BRING GLORY is not quite double figures but close enough @ $9.50 on Bet365 currently. He comes out of a race at Wyong when very unlucky to not be right in the finish, unable to secure a run about 200m from the finish. The winner Miss Fox has since finished third beaten a length at W/Farm on Wednesday and another unlucky runner in that race Ballistica ran a bottler the week before at a double figure price on an unsuitable surface at Canterbury when runner up. Interestingly with the Blinkers on he is 2/3 with the beaten effort last start with the shades on, so it could be 3/3. Also she has won here and on another big track at Scone with the two defeats on tighter tracks. Not sure how good the favourite is but he did run a track record winning a Maiden and the runner up has won a Maiden since (3rd placegetter failed twice since). I’m always willing to take on a Maiden winner stepping up in class so will just hope for the best here. The price seems overly generous to me given the fomrmline alone.

SIR RUPERT CLARKE STAKES 2020

                                    

Race 8 at Caulfield tomorrow sees the 2020 running of the Sir Rupert Clarke stakes, a 1400m Group one race that throws up some amazing historical precedents which no other race in Australia can match.

For that reason it is my favourite race of the spring. It has been quite easy to predict in recent years, and certainly challenges the Stradbroke Handicap in Brisbane as the premier 1400 metre handicap race in the country.

YEAR HORSE JOCKEY BR SP WT Age/Sex Form, Weight Drop, Stage of Preparation

2019 BEGOOD TO YA MOTHER (3) $3 52kg -7kg 5G 6th Memsie Stakes 1400m WFA (2.9L) Third up.

2018 JUNGLE CAT J.DOYLE (5) $13 58kg +1kg  6h- 1st Dubai 1200m G1 First up.

2017 SANTA ANA LANE D.YENDALL (6) $26 52kg- 5g- 4th (1L) M/Valley 1200m Open Listed (-3.5) Third up.

2016 BON AURUM K. McEVOY (5) $4.50 52kg- 4H- 1st  Flemington Sofitel 1400m (Open) (-2) Third up.

2015 STRATUM STAR C.WILLIAMS 15 $8.50 54.5kg 4H- 3rd Memsie Stakes Caulf WFA (-4) Third up.

2014 TRUST IN A GUST  D. LANE 9  52 $6  4H-  1st Le Pine Funeral Stakes Caul (-3.5) Fourth up.

2013 REBEL DANE   G.BOSS    14      $5.50 55.5 4H- 4th Bobbie Lewis (-2) Third up

2012  MOMENT OF CHANGE  L.NOLAN  15  $4.50 52.5 –  4G 3rd Tramway Handicap (-1.5) Third up.

2011 TOORAK TOFF C,WILLIAMS 5   $12  56.5   4H  5th Bobbie Lewis (-0.5) Second Up.
2010 RESPONSE C.WILLIAMS 5 $4.75 53.5 4M 2nd Cockram – 2nd Lets Elope (-2) Third up
2009 TURFFONTEIN G.BOSS 11 $15 55.5 5H 7th Premiere Stk-5th Bobbie Lewis ( +0.5) Third up.
2008 ORANGE COUNTY D.OLIVER 15 $9 54 6G 4th McEwen Stk-3rd Bobbie Lewis (-2) Third up.
2007 BON HOFFA V.DURIC 3 $3.80f 53 5H 1st Caul 1200m Hcp-1st Bobbie Lewis (0) Third up.
2006 REWAAYA C.WILLIAMS 1 $3.70 51 4M 14th Cockram Stk-1st Lets Elope Stk (-2) Third up.
2005 BARELY A MOMENT C.WILLIAMS 8 $8 52 4H 8th MV 1200m 1MW-LY-2nd Memsie Stk (-5.5) Third up.
2004 REGAL ROLLER M.FLAHERTY 11 $4.60 55.5 5G 4th Bletchingly Stk-1st Liston Stk-1st Memsie Stk (-2.5) Fourth up.
2003 EXCEED AND EXCEL C.BROWN 5 $7 52.5 3C 6th San Domenico-1st Up & Coming Stk-1st Roman Consul (-4) Fourth up.
2002 PERNOD K.MCEVOY 15 $12 53.5 5M 1st Cockram Stk
2001 MR. MURPHY D.OLIVER 13 $11 54.5 4H 9th Caul 1200m Hcp
2000 TESTA ROSSA B.PREBBLE 9 7-2f 58.5 4H 1st McEwen Trpy
1999 TESTA ROSSA D.OLIVER 12 5 54.5 3C 1st San Domenico-1st Up & Coming Stk-2nd Ascot Vale Stk
1998 LORD LUSKIN S.BASTER 8 33 51 6G 3rd VRC Winter Final-4th Sand 1000m Hcp-13th Bobbie Lewis
1997 CUT UP ROUGH S.KING 15 12 57 7G 3rd Manikato Stks-3rd Bobbie Lewis
1996 ENCOSTA DE LAGO S.KING 18 4 50 3C 5th MV McKenzie Stks-1st Ascot Vale Stk
1995 OUR MAIZCAY B.YORK 2 1-1f 52.5 3C 1st Up & Coming Stk-1st Roman Consul-1st Ascot Vale Stk
1994 POETIC KING D.OLIVER 2 2f 55.5 4G 1st Bletchingly Stks-3rd Bobbie Lewis
1993 BLACK ROUGE N.WILSON 8 16 52.5 5G 8th MV 1200m Hcp-4th Manikato Stk-4th Memsie Stk
1992 MANNERISM D.OLIVER 11 11-4f 56 5M 1st Let’s Elope Stk
1991 ST. JUDE B.YORK 4 9-2f 57 4H 4th Bobbie Lewis
1990 SUBMARINER D.OLIVER 4 8 49 4H 6th Caul 1200m Hcp

IN THE LAST 29 YEARS:

AGE / SEX

3C – 4 WINNERS
4G – 2 WINNER
4H – 10 WINNERS
4M – 2 WINNER
5G – 4 WINNERS
5H – 2 WINNERS
5M – 2 WINNERS
6H -1 WINNER

6G – 2 WINNERS
7G – 1 WINNER

BARRIER
(1-5) 12 WINS
(6-10) 6 WINS
(11-15) 11 WINS
(16+) 1 WIN

LAST START
12 last start winners have won
8 horses were placed at their last run
9 horses unplaced (inc 4 x 4th, 5th & 6th)

I’m utilising 30 years of data ,and remarkably 17 winners in that period have been Entires (a horse or colt, not a gelding). That factor alone accounts for over 50% per cent of winners, and over 60% of those (10) have been four years of age. There have been four 3yo Colts, and two 5yo Entires also win in this period. In the 2014 years edtion of this race there were six entires engaged, who astonishingly  finished in the first eight placings.

The other factor that has played a major factor in the outcome of the race is the leadup. The most prolific has clearly been the Bobbie Lewis Quality run down the straight at Flemington, two weeks prior). It has provided nine of the past 29 winners, including five of the last nine but none of the last 4 winners came out of that race, and a change of programming appears to now make that race far less of an influence. It is now run a week before this race rather than two and three weeks prior, as was the case.

Interestingly only one of those actually won the Bobbie Lewis (Bon Hoffa in 2007), though all bar one horse that has come out of that race (to win this), has finished in the first five placings. Four of the last five Bobbie Lewis representatives that went on to win this have been Entires, and three of those have been four year olds.

Mares do have an average record in the race with only four winners in the past 30 years, and none have come out of the Bobbie Lewis. Three of the four female winners  came via the Let’s Elope Stakes.

Barriers have played little consequence in the outcome of this race so I think it is best not to be put off by wider draws. Stratum Star in 2015 (Barrier 15), Rebel Dane in 2013 (Barrier 14), and Moment Of Change in 2012 (barrier 15) are strong recent examples suggesting that if the horse is good enough it can still win from a poor draw. And barriers 11-15 have a better record than the inside barriers of 1-5. Barrier 15 has won four of the last seventeen editions and two of the last seven.Only 7 of the past 23 winners have drawn inside barrier 5 and only 2 of the past 16 have done so.

.

The weight range 49kg-55.5kg has provided 24 of the past 30 winners which might once again help us whittle down the chances this year.

Jockey Craig Williams knows what it takes to win the race having been successful on five of the past Fifteen occasions (oddly all have been 4yo’s), and Damien Oliver has won the race six times since 1990. Those two have now won it a combined 11 times in the past 28 years. That is a rarity in any horse race.

10 of the last 19 winners have been four year olds, as have 7 of the last 9.

24 of the last 28 winners finished in the first 5 placings last start

17 of the last 18 winners have started at $15 or less

13 of the last 19 winners have been third up into their preparation. Four have been fourth up and one has been second up, and one has been first up.

Former winners of this race have sired 2 of the past 8 winners. Bon Hoffa (Bon Aurum), and Barely A Moment (Moment Of Change),

The ideal candidate to win this race would have the following criteria;

  1. Aged 5 years or less
  2. Be a Colt or Horse (Entire)
  3. Have finished with a win or placing last start, or finished fourth or fifth less than 2L from the winner.
  4. Preferably coming into the race third up
  5. Dropping in weight from last start.
  6. Preferably be drawn outside barrier 4
  7. Be at starting odds of $15 or less.

Tempo and Track condition;

We should get a truly run race here with a better than average speed in the first half of the race with the likes of Dollar For Dollar, Streets Of Avalon, Begood Toya Mother and Banquo likely to go forward with Achenar Star and Tagaloa likely to be prominent. This should give every runner a hope in theory and it seems more likely that something will come from off the pace to win. It looks like being a firm surface at Caulfield but not one that should disadvantage any runner. A strong wind has been mentioned so it’s best to monitor what happens in the early races. If it is an issue then you might want to strongly consider horses that are well drawn and can get some cover in the race.

Analysis;

I’m not going to mention every runner here as I’d prefer to concentrate on the most likely chances from a historical perspective and some other races on the day (Logical Longshots)

BEHEMOTH– He should get the run of the race and is in super form. I think there is little doubt he will be in the finish and is a big chance for multi players. With the weight of 60kg I’m going to have to risk him but it will be no surprise at all if he does win.

AGE OF CHIVALRY– Is not one of my horses and I find the stable a bit hard to follow but he looks a live chance here. This is his distance, he has drawn well, and has been deliberately set for the race from 12 months ago. He gave Showmanship 4kg last start and that horse would be top pick here if he had run. He needs to find the line here but seems primed to do so.

PRETTY BRAZEN– Historically she faces a task (being a 4yo mare) but she is in form and her half brother Dollar For Dollar (another good chance here) almost won this race on the backup (7 days between runs) a couple of years ago. She did win the Sandown Guineas off an 11 day break in the Spring. At level weights last week she earned her win against Arcadia Queen and if that mare was in this race with the same weight I’m pretty sure she would be favourite. This mare has a great turn of foot and looks suited to this race, so the $18 is very enticing and makes her the best value in the race for mine.

TAGALOA– He is the first three year old I can think of that has contested this race for quite some time. My first thought was that he is poorly weighted not getting weight off the older horses on the minimum weight. The thing is though if you look back at the last 3yo winner Exceed And Excel, he actually gave weight to the older horses and was probably less credentialed at the time. Prior to that Testa Rossa (and third placed Redoutes Choice) were at level weights with the older horses. E & E dropped 4kg from memory and this horse drops 5.5kg. The 1400m is new territory but his breeding suggests it is an asset. I think it’s fair to say he probably can’t win going on the time he ran last start but he was wide and he importantly he is 2/2 second up and could improve massively here. And conversely his 2yo times form last Autumn do look good enough. He looks a very good chance to put the 3yo colts’ back on their pedestal this year in an edition that maybe lacks high quality down in the weights?

BANQUO– He really does look the weighted horse in the race and looks the perfect horse from a historical precedent being a 4yo Entire, in good enough form, and coming in third up. He meets Superstorm 3kg better for beating him third up, Pretty Brazen 2.5kg better for a less than length defeat in the Sandown Guineas, and Dollar For Dollar 1.5kg better for beating him home last week. The query is the 7 day back up (not much of a precedent historically) and whether he is finding the line well enough. He well and truly gets the chance to put that theory to the test in this race from a good barrier with likely cover.

I AM SUPERMAN– He looks super value and being a 4yo entire is a perfect historical fit. His left hand track record is far superior to his right handed one and he proved that winning first up. 21 days between runs is the minimum requirement for this horse and I’m not too worried about the wide barrier as he is an import and has a better record from wider draws (drew well last start but sat outside the leader with galloping room). Not totally sure if he is Group 1 quality or not but he gets his chance to prove it here in an astute stable.

Conclusion

I’m doubting that IAS will get a start in this, but whilst writing I think I have settled on TAGALOA as top pick but do find it quite hard to split him or BANQUO and PRETTY BRAZEN. The value looks to be with the mare though and there are more chances than I have mentioned here of course. I’m merely using history as the main tool for picking the winner. It has paid dividends in the past, and I’ve had at least something on 7 of the past 8 winners with most of them very good results.

  1. TAGALOA
  2. Pretty Brazen
  3. Banquo.

Quite keen to take that Trifecta too.

Logical Longshots 12/09

Off to a flyer last week with Humidor and once again I’ve found it pretty difficult to really find chances at double figure odds with realistic chances. They are there though, and although I haven’t been able to cover every race I’d like to, some diligence has uncovered a few. I’d be happy with one winner or a couple of placegetters. I’ve personally steered clear of the 3yo races which I suggest most punters should consider. You just don’t know that upside some have, they come from all different formlines, and most haven’t been on the track since their two year old days. If you have to back any make sure it’s one at a decent price (double figures) is my advice.

Flemington R7 MIAMI BOUND She may not be up to this class but I just don’t want to see her go around at this price without an investment. Ignore her Autumn form (she didn’t come up?) and base your assumption on what she did last Spring. In the Oaks she beat home Moonlight Maid by 5.25L. In the SA Derby Russian Camelot (the favourite) beat that same mare by 6.7L. That might suggest there isn’t too much between these two stablemates, she has the better draw, and the benefit of one run back which was quite impressive, making up many lengths from the 600m on. She is 2-2/4 at this track and 2/2 in the wet which might actually be her forte. Hopefully the rain has come by this time otherwise my confidence will have lessened, not to say that I’m full of it in anyway regard to her chances. $26 necessitates serious thought though. Gatting returns to the scene of his greatest victory in this race which came off a last placing first up, and the same scenario exists here. He has drawn well again and just may be a Flemington horse having had only the one run here. He could get out to 100-1 or more again and who knows what might happen in a race that rarely produces a winner that goes on to do anything in future Spring races.

Randwick R7 RIODINI resumes here for Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott and has been pretty much ignored in the market here which is probably based on hidings in two soft trials behind Nature Strip. Apparently he has made immense improvement since the second one and he is 2/2 first up and 2/2 in the wet. On right handed tracks he is 4-1/5 with his worst effort last start on a left handed track when pushed very wide on the turn and maybe not handling the corner that day. The only defeat right handed was a narrow one at the hoofs of Dragon Leap. That horse got crucified with 58.5kg last week in a stronger Tramway handicap but was only beaten 2 lengths. The 53kg here for Riodini almost looks a luxury in comparison. At $17 or better he looks worthy of an each way investment though his chances probably rest on a positive ride from an awkward barrier in a race that may lack an abundance of speed.

Randwick R8 JEN RULES is going around at an astronomical price which is the reason why I can’t resist. She might lack the class but I think she has shown steady improvement and wasn’t far away in a G2 race last time at a distance I feel is further than she wants. That day she beat home Outback Barbie who had prior been close up at G1 level in the Stradbroke. It is $18 here whilst JR is $81?? I think this is her best distance for a first up and she will appreciate some give in the track. Her trial recently wasn’t too bad at all and she has drawn well. This is a mares race so anything is possible. $17 a place is available on Bet 365. There are some great stats in this race for the likes of Shout The Bar (unbeaten first up, track, distance and wet- weight?), Haut Brion Her, and Evalina (3/3 second up and drier the better). It might be worth considering those three in your Quaddie.

Randwick R9 CISCO BAY needs the track to be rain affected looking at his fine stats of 5/9 on Soft going. With the claim for Brock Ryan he gets in well against all the horses he opposed last start so why is he $23+ and Orcein (unlucky admittedly last start) $9 meeting him 2.5kg worse off? Laure Me In beat him home 1.5L last preparation but is 3.5kg worse off today and is lacking fitness. This horse is going to need luck and a good ride from a wide barrier, but he can go forward and he was wide from the 600m last start and did a good job to finish as close as he did. He just seems overs in what is not an overly strong race really.

Kalgoorlie 6/09

I have been following the form here of late and it’s a decent day of racing there today. I’m not keen to get involved in the first three races but will still post my thoughts on them. Some nice value around later in the day so hopefully I can jag a winner or two. R7 has me sitting on the fence a bit in regards to suggesting an outright winner given I like three at very good prices.

R1 SNIP’N’TUCK- This is a Maiden race and this horse started as favourite at an arguably stronger grade race at Northam last start. He carried a 56 handicapper rating into that race so he might have dropped a point or two for this (n/a)? The topweight here has a 58 rating though and has to give him 6.5kg after the claim for SNT. Even if you assume SNT rates 54 today she should only be getting 2kg from the toppie. Laqdar Ramoly rode at least two winners in town yesterday at Belmont so will be full of confidence coming into this. Also this horse is a half sister to Mackenzie Brook who was so impressive yesterday making the $1.35 favourite Montelena work hard for the win. Put MB in your Blackbook as it should win a race very soon. Odds about this one today are nothing special so I’m happy to look on.

R2 NAUGHTY THOUGHTIES- Another Maidener but should benefit from the claim of Madi Derrick today. Had she carried 53.5kg at her past two starts she probably wins both and one of her vanquishers has since won going up in class (Devine Beast). Drawn perfectly so should go very close. Odds are about right so not overly keen to get involved.

R3 CENSURE- I don’t like this race at all but I’m just assuming this horse could be some value given he has the Bar Plates Off. His trial recently was just ordinary but it was a serious one won by a serious horse in Belter. It was certainly treated more like a real race for this horse and he probably had the Bar Plates on that day anyway, I think you would want to see some sort of market move for it today and if that happens the value will be questionable anyway. Given that I’m not overly keen to bet.

R4 There looks to me a massive amount of speed here and the two that appeal are the stablemates VICTORY SHOT and DEVINE BEAST who can sit off the pace and come over the top (check pattern of racing though by this stage). Kyra Yuill would have had the choice of rides and has gone for VS but the better odds are with DB. I’m giving it the nod given it has won from barrier 1 at it’s last two starts and it has drawn the same barrier again. Not too many can go from a Maiden win to a Class 2 win at it’s next start either so he might be the one with the most upside.

R5 TRAMIKA really appeals to me here given it’s massive run behind my Blackbooker Black Comet last start who had all the favours. This horse was 3 wide no cover the whole race and definitely should have won. It gets a 1.5kg weight swing on that horse today and is better drawn. Should get the gun run and $6 seems very good value. The favourite Pretty Friar comes straight out of a Maiden win and carries the same weight. The topweight has basically the same weight disadvantage it had when just beating Black Comet two starts back so I think Tramika can beat it home too. Taking 1,2,3 & 5 in the first leg of the Quaddie.

R6- Not overly confident here and I’ll probably stay out unless I can get $20 about UNBREAKABLE. The claim for a capable apprentice has me interested given it only carries 51.5kg and has met similar opposition before with quite a bit more weight. This is 3kg less weight than it has carried in over three years. It’s stablemate MAGNIFORCE also seems overs here. It wil be up on the pace and strong at the end of 1300m.

R7 FAIR SONARI is 3/3 here and 2 of those wins have been off 14+ length defeats at previous start. Won the same lead in race last year before winning this. Only this year he carried 4kg more and ran better time off a less than ideal break. PUSHIN’ SHAPES this time last year won in Melbourne. His form has been ordinary since but he seems to like travelling. He is 1/1 here and has 5 wins outside of the Metro area. A big weight drop for him which was the same scenario at Caulfield last year. GANGBUSTERS is going ordinary but likes this track. He was down the track last year in this but then the Winkers went on and the won the cup race over 2100 one start later at $31. Winkers came off in July this year but his form was actually quite good in them. They go back on today and he is $30+. Of course the race doesn’t end there with numerous other chances. But all 3 of those look to be good value.

R8 RECAPITULATE can win again here with the claim for Madi Derrick. Should lead and he didn’t have good stats second up prior to his last win so he should run even better today. If there is to be an upset it could come from KEEPER MEAN who is $71 or better. This time last year it gave Racapitulate 7kg and beat it home. From a decent barrier today it can get an economical run on the pace, unlike first up here when it was always wide. It has drawn barriers 13,10,13 & 10 at it’s last four starts so it has had to do some work early in all four runs in all likelihood. Funnier things have happened so I think at that price I think it is worth having a small Each Way investment.

Logical Longshots 5/09

Well, Spring has sprung and to be honest I wasn’t going to start this year’s edition today as value seemed to be a little bit hard to find. But something clicked overnight and I think these three might be worth some thought at better than double figure quotes. Each Way if you can get $4 a place.

Moonee Valley R8 HUMIDOR– Okay perhaps I’m being a bit hopeful here but he does have a few things in his favour- Firstly he is the only genuine WFA horse in the race. Secondly he gets back to a dry track. Thirdly he goes very well here with three runs producing two Cox Plate placings and his other effort was a 2.5L fourth in the M/Valley Cup last year at a distance that seems a bit beyond him. Add to that another change of stable and a host of gear changes, the most important of which is Blinkers on which shows some intent to me. People were saying he was washed up after three failures in Perth in the Winter but my first thought then was maybe not because they were all on unexpectedly wet tracks. And realistically looking at it now is a 3.5L defeat by Perfect Jewel in one of them now looking that bad? I was able to get $29 this morning and you still might be able to acquire $20+ about him.

Randwick R8 LOOKS LIKE ELVIS– Looks like a half decent chance to me given he should have been in the finish first up which was his first run off a very well earned break. He is now in a different stable and really only needs to reproduce that run to be competitive here. If this race was in Brisbane I’d assume he would be giving weight to Vanna Girl (she too is a good chance here). He was only 3.5L away in the Turnbull last Spring and was narrowly beaten by Niccanova in Brisbane before his spell. That horse ran very well here at WFA last week. I’m hoping he can win this because I think he represents value at a double figure quote and he may even drift further. He should be more like $6 I feel, and note too his excellent second up record. Let’s hope he is ‘In the room today” which I guess is another way of saying he ‘turns up’!

R9 GHOSTLY– Is hardly a world beater but this race has opened up since the scratching of the hot favourite Masked Crusader. Ironically he comes from a really good wet track family but time and again he fails on wet tracks, and my theory is he just doesn’t like that type of surface. Interestingly he is 0/15 with more than 58kg and 5/19 with less than that. The 54.5kg he carries today looks a positive after the claim. His last two wins have been fresh, on a dry track, coming off a wet track failure. That is the scenario today and I just can’t believe $41 is being offered up. Especially so given he meets Best Stone (who doesn’t seem to like this track) 4.5kg better for a 3.5L defeat last start, remembering too that race was on an unsuitable surface for him. Best Stone is $7 so why the disparity in price? This is also his best distance and probably his best win was in the Wagga Town Plate (a race Santa Ana Lane won) was at this trip.

Stradbroke Handicap 2020

I have to admit I’m not overly keen on the race this year. I used to have a plethora of historical info but that seems a bit irrelevant in this era with the track surface the way it is and the Carnival cut short this year. What we have always known though, is it’s a good race for those horses that are  down in the weights, in form, and particularly the three year old age group.

A day or so ago I thought it was probably going to be a leaders race with little speed on paper but it is possible a couple more might try for the lead too (Graff and
Nicanova?), so now I’m not so sure. It might be best to just assume every horse will get it’s chance and not factor in the speed too much. We also don’t know what pattern of racing is going to be suited although the track did seem to race quite fairly two weeks ago. Perhaps it didn’t really suit the leaders as much as expected that day? Some statistical form on most of the field follows;

TREKKING- 1/1 at track and distance. 2-2/4 Winter, 7/11 with 15-35 days between runs. 10-8/25 Good to Soft 5 tracks.

KEMANTARI- 0-6/13 carrying more than 57kg. 4-4/10 with less than 57kg. 2-3/6 at 1400m. 0/7 fourth up +.

NICCANOVA- 2-2/6 at Eagle Farm. Meets Victorem 0.5kg worse for beating last start.5-1/7 on wet tracks. 2-2/5 second up. 0-4/7 Winter.

RANIER- 3-3/6 barriers 1-3. 5-3/12 1300m-1500m.

VICTOREM- Dale Smith 1-2/3. 7-3/11 <56.5kg. Never carried less than 54kg. 3/4 Winter. 2-2/4 third up.

TYZONE- 0-2/5 Eagle Farm but G1 placed this race last year 5-3/9 Winter. 5-3/9 with 15-21 days between runs. Meets Trekking 4.5kg better for 1.75L defeat last year.

CRACK ME UP- 0-0/4 Group 1 races. 0-1/5 Eagle Farm. 0-0/7 at 1400m. 2-1-6 Second up. 0-2/9 First up. 0/3 with 22-28 days between runs.

VEGA ONE- 2/4 at Eagle Farm. 4-3/9 barriers 1-6. Fourth up 2/3. 0-1/7 with 0-14 days between runs. 5-2/8 15-28 days between runs.

CHIEF IRONSIDE- Blinkers on first time.

GRAFF- 1/1 Winter.

MADAM ROUGE- 0/7 beyond 1300m.

DEEP IMAGE- 4-2/7 at Eagle Farm and 2/2 Track and Distance. 3-4/7 with 15-21 days between runs.

BAM’S ON FIRE- 3-5/8 barriers 1-3. 3-3/6 with 22+ days between runs. 20 starts and placed 17 times.

DAWN PASSAGE- 5/10 career and a three year old coming in off three straight wins with big weights. Unknown on back up.

HIGHTAIL- Three year old coming off two straight wins and dropping in Weight. 1400m?

EXHILARATES- 1/1 with 7 days between runs. 3yo Filly dropping in weight. 1400m?

 

Summary;

These are the ones I can definitely make a case for;

TREKKING- As can be seen from his form stats there aren’t too many negatives. My query is can he conceded this much weight to a few decent horse’s in a genuine handicap, which wasn’t the case last start. Barrier 17 is also a slight concern for him, espeically if the speed isn’t really on. He carries 4kg more than last year. He is the proven class performer though and quite often if you put this kind of race in the two hard basket then you are wise to come back to the topweight.

KEMENTARI- He is a total enigma and hasn’t won for ages. There are three things in his favour here though. First the big weight drop to a winning weight for him statistically. Secondly the 1400m which is much more suitable. And thirdly the gear change of Winkers off. The last time that happened he won. Has to be taken on trust but he is going to be strong at the finish of 1400m.

NICCANOVA- That was a big first up run of his when no better than three wide the whole race yet he hit the line hard. He seemed to overrace a bit early too which suggests he has come back in great fashion.  If he was mine I’d be trying to lead like he did when winning with 60kg here at a mile a few starts back. If he can do that unopposed he looks a massive chance of winning.

VICTOREM- His stats are enormous for this. My little query is the time was a bit weak last start (2 year olds were faster) and is he as good at 1400m as he is at 1200m? This time last year he was running as well as Brave Song, who was competitive with Trekking at the time at level weights. He gets 5.5kg off that horse in this race so he looks a very big winning chance. His odds look about right or perhaps a touch of overs.

GRAFF- I’m giving him a hope because he is so well weighted. The jockey stated last time he wanted more distance and to be closer to the pace. Well, he gets the chance to prove that here from barrier 2. I’m not  convinced he is a 1400m horse but if he can get a soft run he might prevail. Interestingly his Grandam is the Dam of the three year old Dawn Passage who does run a strong 1400m.

BAM’S ON FIRE- I think she is great odds given she was less than 2L off Lyre last start conceding her 1.5kg. Lyre was then less than 2L off Trekking last start who carried 4.5kg more than her. This mare gets 7kg off Trekking today so can beat that horse home. Apparently she has thrived since coming to Queensland and the freshen up is seen as being beneficial off a very long campaign

DAWN PASSAGE.- I think if he can handle the seven day backup and get an economical enough run he will probably win the race. He also has to handle the tricky Eagle Farm surface which is always a bit of a concern. An in form three year old who probably has improvement in him looks the right recipe for success thoough and the $6 odds look reasonable enough. His win last win was epic given he was three wide throughout. He couldn’t have done anymore and did very well to prevail.

My top 4 with no real confidence;

  1. DAWN PASSAGE
  2. BAM’S ON FIRE
  3. VICTOREM
  4. NICCANOVA

And that is leaving out the topweight Trekking who looks a great chance, and the enigmatic pairing of Kementari and Graff who you have to give some hope to.

 

 

 

Goodwood Handicap 2020

The Goodwood is Race 8 (3.55 pm AEST) at Morphettville on Saturday run over a distance of 1200m. It is a famous old Sprint race of the Australian Turf conceived in 1881.

It was made a set weights and penalties race in 2007 (previously a handicap) which attracted the high calibre likes of Takeover Target and Black Caviar, who duly won at very short odds. But apart from those two results, taking Handicap status away from the race hasn’t stopped the upset results coming.

So to say it has been a bit of a nightmare race for punters would be somewhat of an understatement. Below are the last 12 winners  (including age,  gender and weight carried) since the race became a set weights and penalties race in 2007.

2019 DESPATCH 4g 56kg $21

2018 SANTA ANA LANE 5g 58.5kg $26

2017 VEGA MAGIC 4g 56.5kg $4.80

2016 BLACK HEART BART 5g 57kg $2.80

2015 FLAMBERGE 5g 56.5kg $21
2014 SMOKIN’ JOEY 6g 56kg $41
2013 PLATELET 4m 56.5kg $9
2012 BLACK CAVIAR 5m 57kg $1.05
2011 LONE ROCK 3f 52kg $31
2010 VELOCITEA 4m 54kg$7
2009 TAKEOVER TARGET 9g 58.5kg $1.40
2008 SHADOWAYS 5g 54kg $31
2007 LET GO THOMMO 6g 55.5kg $31

 

Recent History tells us:

 
– Seven of the last Twelve winners started $20 or better, and four of those have been $31 or better.
– 15 of the last 19 winners have been trained in Victoria.
– 14 of the last 17 had started at 1100m or 1200m last start.

 

– Wider barriers appear to be no real disadvantage with 7 of the last 17 winners drawing in the second half of the field. Four of those drew a double-digit barrier.
– A filly or mare has won four of the past Nine editions, and five of the past 15. In the past 29 years, eight have won, representing a strike rate of over 30 per cent. None have managed to win in the past seven years though which is a slightly concerning trend for the fairer sex. Prior to that they had won four in a row.
– Four year olds have the most prolific record winning 12 of the past 29 editions, but oddly

Only two four-year-old male horses have won since the year 2000 (Vega Magic and Despatch last year), and only five have won since 1990. Eight of the last Eleven winners have been aged 5 or over, with five of them aged 5.

 

-Only 3  of last 13 winners have carried more weight than at their prior start- Black Caviar (+0.5kg) and Shaodoways (+2kg), the latter still only having to carry 54kg to victory and Despatch last year

 

The last 8 winners have carried 56kg or more, and 10 of the last 13 winners have carried 55.5kg or more.

 

-7 of last 13 winners came out of a Group 1 race last start.

 

 

-Before Santa Ana Lane won two years ago, and Despatch last year, the last horse to come out of the DC Mackay Stakes to win this was Super Elegant in 2004. Despatch is the first horse horse to win that race (and then this one) was Boardwalk Angel in 1989.

 

-15 of last 20 winners won or placed at their prior start to winning this. 9 of 13 since the weight scale has changed.

 

– Only one horse has managed to win this first up in the new millennium (Vega Magic). -All the fillies and mares that have won this race since the new millennium have won or placed at their previous start. Flamberge came close to being a first up winner in 2015 coming off a 55 day break. He is/was a notable fresh performer.

Speed Map;

JUNGLE EDGE and XILONG look the two leaders, with the latter benefiting more from a rails draw, and possibly content to sit off the older horse. Sumlight and Order Of Command should be just off the pace getting all favours, and Gytrash can also sit handy though risks being caught wide off his awkward barrier. If I had to make an educated guess I’d say the on pacers are more suited in this race, and we’ve already seen two big Morphettville Sprints in the past 12 months (last years Goodwood and this years Robert Sangster) dominated by on pace runners). It really depends on how fast Jungle Edge wants to go, and how much pressure Xilong wants to apply early. Because the former has drawn wide he is probably going to have to go faster early than his connections would have preferred. Had he drawn better, he would have had more of a chance to relax.

 

Stats Analysis)

SANTA ANA LANE- 5-1/8 with 22-28 days between runs (P). 5-1/12 Group 1 Races (P).

TREKKING- 6/10 with 15-35 days between runs (P). 9-7/22 dry tracks (P)?

GYTRASH- 6-1/7 at 1000m, 1-4/6 at 1200m (N). 8-9/18 Career (P) 4-2/6 Soft tracks (
N)?
SUNLIGHT- 4/4 third up (P)

ZOUTORI- 5-5/11 with more than 15 days between runs (P).

JUNGLE EDGE- 0-3/13 Group 1 races (N), 0-7/26 Dry tracks (N)? 18-17/54 wet tracks (P)? 5-1/8 fifth and sixth up in preparations.

THE INEVITABLE- 2/2 third up (P). 4/4 with 22-28 days between runs (N)

ORDER OF COMMAND- 5-1/6 in the Autumn (P). 5-1/7 Soft tracks (N)?

BEHEMOTH- 3-4/8 barriers 1-6 (N0

BOLD STAR- 1-1/8 track. 5-1/6 in fields of less than eight runners (N)

LYRE- 3-0/4 barriers 4-9. Blinkers first time last start and Group 1 placed.

XILONG- 5-3/9 career thus far. Blinkers on first time last start and won.

AMBERDI- 7-3/15 <56kg. 2/2 fourth up (P) 5-2/8 Barriers 7-9 (P)

L’IL KONTRA- Winkers On First time.

 

Summary;

Firstly I’m a bit surprised to see the track is still rated a Soft 5 which may not improve today. That probably means there is going to be some give in the surface all day. In the stats analysis I have labelled either a positive or negative for the horse in brackets but have now had to put a question mark besides a few of them. Some give in the surface certainly suits the likes of Order Of Command and Jungle Ruler at face value, and probably hinders Trekking, Sunlight and Zoutori to a degree. I have had some advice that the track should be better off the rail today so perhaps a wider barrier draw isn’t going to be a hindrance.

I’m not going to go into massive form analysis here but I did like the historical profile and relative odds of ZOUTORI at around a $20 quote early. Given he finished alongside Gytrash in the Newmarket not that long ago, and the weights are similar here, he looks way over the odds. Obviously you have to ignore the last start failure but that’s not hard to do given he didn’t get a look in down the running, and was rearward in a leader dominated race. He goes very well fresh. My initial though was that BEHEMOTH is well weighted keeping in mind the lower weighted ones don’t normally win this race. Hard to knock though and he might be set to peak from a good draw. ORDER OF COMMAND seems to be a different horse this preparation and reminds me a bit of last year’s winner Despatch who had come into the race off some wins when sitting three wide. OOC has won both his races off three wide runs this preparation and now drops in weight significantly. Any give in the track looks favourable. GYTRASH is a deserved favourite on his form of late and last start win, but there does seem to be a couple of negatives he has to overcome. Maybe the barrier actually plays in his favour but his form is slightly better at less than 1200m. At least he has decent form at the trip though, unilike Despatch last year, and Bella Vella a couple of weeks ago. He is likely to at least loom as the winner in the straight.  SANTA ANA LANE needs to find his best form, and requires a solid speed. But he is a former winner, and looking at his form the past twelve months this is the right break between runs for him.

  1. ZOUTORI
  2. Order Of Command
  3. Behemoth
  4. Gytrash

 

 

Racing 9/05

Totally out of form at the moment but these are the ones I like today at reasonable odds;

Randwick R7 SCARLET DREAM gets a race to suit here on a track surface she should enjoy, assuming it keeps drying out. She very nearly won two starts ago and then couldn’t handle the wet last start. This isn’t a strong race and the double figure (or close to) price appeals

R8 Doomben- OUTBACK BARBIE has a great first up record and is drawn to get all favours, assuming she does get clear running in the straight. She is also partial to this track with only 1 of her other wins (from 12 starts) at other venues. $4.50 is  the absolute minimum I want to take about a fresh horse but at least you can get that. With any luck whatsoever the stablemate Vega One is looking for 1400m and finds this too short.

Caulfield R8 ESPERANCE looks the one suited with the track rating of Heavy. Her run was more than adequate first up and hopefully she gets clear running from the inside barrier, and doesn’t get too far back. It does seem so far that those with cover and inside runs are performing the best.

Ascot R5 FIRE MAKER is a BB horse of mine after it beat subsequent duel Metro winner King Blitz a couple of starts back at Pinjarra. It then had no luck in the straight last start and arguably could have won with a clear run. It has decent wet track form and is probably going to start a better price than it currently is. It has blown in the betting late at it’s past two starts so I’m betting Best Price here. FIRE SALE is also in the Blackbook off a very impressive win at the same track and distance last start. These two ran similar time and Pike goes on and he does drop a lot more weight than the other horse.  Not much between them but Fire Maker has been running in better races of late and is going to be at least twice the price.

Morphettvile R9  BAYOU has wet track form and has been drawing poorly of late. Today it should get the ideal run in the race and all of it’s wins have been from inside barriers. It looks well weighted meeting the topweight 2.5kg better for last start, and similarly so Lakhani Rose from two starts back. That coupled with a more economical run should see her go very close at a decent price today. She is a half to a few handy ones who have good wet track form. On a dry surface I would have been all over APPALACHIAN. Have a look at it’s past two runs and I doubt you’ll have ever seen a horse as unlucky at two consecutive starts. He could be a bit of a tease (inconclusive) as he is a bit headstrong and his only go on a wet track was quite poor. Having said that he has trialled well on wet tracks and should be suited from an outside barrier. I have to save on it.

R8 Derby- This is really a no bet race for me but I have it down to either DALASAN or RUSSIAN CAMELOT. I was going to risk the former horse but if you watch it’s debut win it made TheMooonliteGambler look second rate. Dalasan has been beating that horse of late, maybe not quite as impressively. There is very little speed in this race on paper and that does appear on paper to suit Dalasan who can settle up closer than any of the favoured runners. A pedestrian pace would suit him although there is no guarantee that will happen. The all European bred RC is going to be much vaunted if he wins  and there  comparisons will be made to Makybe Diva if he goes on with it, given she too was totally bred overseas. My theory is that the Colts and Geldings  have an edge on the females here, but I could also be proven wrong. The times Dalasan has been running in Adelaide have been superior to the Fillies, but the more exposed colts this Autumn in Sydney at least (whilst top class) haven’t run 2400m, and the void could easily be filled by the up and coming horse here in Russian Camelot. All very theoretical but just hoping it plays out that way for my sake.

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Sangster Stakes/TAB Classic 2020

This race is a Group 1 fillies and mares race at weight-for-age level to be run at Morphettville racecourse in Adelaide on Saturday. Since its inception in 1983 it has changed names on numerous occasions.

Once again we have a race with an honour roll that impresses, the most notable of which are Black Caviar and Alinghi.

High quality mares with a high strike rate and/or consistent career record often win. Teh aformementioned Black Caviar, Alinghi, Platelet, Universal Queen, Ellicorsam  Our Egyptian Reine, Shoals. and Miracles Of Life are ample proof of that being the case.

Below are the last 17 winners of the event with age, gender (filly or mare) and barrier draw in brackets.

 

2019 SPRIGHT 5M (13)

2018 SHOALS 4M (15)

2017 SECRET AGENDA 4m (16)

2016 PRECIOUS GEM 6m (6)

2015 MIRACLES OF LIFE 4m (6)

2014 DRIEFONTEIN 4m (10)
2013 PLATELET 4m (11)
2012 BLACK CAVIAR 5m (3)
2011 RESPONSE 4m (9)
2010 ROSTOVA 3f (14)
2009 BEL MER 4m (13)
2008 JUSTE MOMENTE 4m (13)
2007 UNIVERSAL QUEEN 3f (10)
2006 ELLICORSAM 5m (6)
2005 ALINGHI 3f (9)
2004 FRENCH BID 3f (11)
2003 OUR EGYPTIAN REINE 4m (13)

 

The most relevant historical statistics are weighted, and collated in the table below.

13/17 drew barrier 9 or wider. 16/17 drew 6 or wider. Only Black Caviar has won inside barrier 6 and that was in a 10 horse (only) field.
B) 13/17 were aged either 3 or 4. Eight of last Twelve winners have been four years old.
C) 11/17 Finished in first or second place last start. At least 12/17 placed last start and 6 of the last 8 winners had won their last start ,which includes Precious Gem who managed to win this @ $20+. In fact of all those winners only Black Caviar started a very short price. The others were $12, $15, $21, $6.50, $9 & $6. You could do worse than back a last start winner at a close to or double figure price.
D) 17/17 ran in a Group or Listed race last start.
9/17 ran in a Group 1 race.
E) 13/17 raced between 1000m and 1200m at their last start.
F) 11/17 raced against all sexes at previous start.
G) 13/17 raced on a left handed (anti-clockwise) track last start. BUT two of the last three winners (Shoals, Secret Agenda) have come off a win at Randwick, One at G1 level and the other at G2. Four years ago Miracles Of Life came of a win at Randwick and a third at Rosehill (G1 level). Last year Spright came of a 2.8L seventh at Randwick. So, four of the last five winners have raced at Randwick the start prior in one of their last two starts, and/or four of last five winners have come out of a race in Sydney.

H) The last 17 winners had their prior run interstate.

I) 7/17 either led or were in second place in the early stages of this race
J) 10/17 started $8 or less.

 

I looks as though they will be running on a Heavy surface this year, which is a bit of a rarity, but perhaps it does thin down the chances a little bit.

The speed in the race seems to be with SAVATIANO, BAM’S ON FIRE, BELLA VELLA, BEAUTIFUL FLYER and the favorite SUNLIGHT (who could easily stalk this Quartet also). The 2yo AWAY GAME is very versatile and is likely to be just behind the pace, and the same could be said for the Dual Group winner I AM EXCITED who couldn’t get close enough to the speed from a wide barrier last start. On paper there seems to be enough pace in the race to give every horse it’s chance, but it will be interesting to see whether any track bias ensues on the day. The consensus seems to be that it will play fairly, and the track is more likely to be leaderish when the surface is dry.

Analysis;

  1. SUNLIGHT– I’m a bit torn with her. Clearly she is the best horse in the race and should benefit enormously off her first up effort. I think it’s a case of the drier the track the better her chances though, and I thought her run first up was disappointing given she could only beat a restricted class mare (Kenyan Wonder) about a length and a half at level weights that day.  On the positive side the stable are very good at getting things right second up,  and her career form suggests that anyway. She looks like the typical winner of this race (classy and consistent), and the barrier is good historically, though bad on paper. The form out of that Golden Eagle race in Sydney is  poor so I’m just going to risk her at the odds she is. I’d say $3.50 is about her right price and she might actually get to that quote.
  2. I AM EXCITED– She is a Group 1 and Group 2 winner with the right sort of profile coming into this via Sydnee. If it gets to a Heavy surface though I can’t have her and ideally I’d be wanting to see a Soft 5 or better before I put my money on. She is quite well in at the weights though and if she finds some better footing somewhere could still win.
  3. SAVATIANO– She is another that profiles quite well but is also a mare who would be better off on anything but a Heavy surface. The travel might freshen her up, and she needs that off a preparation that appears to be tapering off.  I’m risking her given the conditions.
  4. MADAM ROUGE– Clearly seems to be a dry tracker so the weather gods have been against her here. Not sure she is quite good enough anyway and is a better mare with a longer break between runs. Risking.
  5. TELEPLAY– She is an interesting chance given she is 3/3 on Soft going with a failure on one Heavy track. That was right handed though (at at WFA vs Winx!) and her other dry track start right handed was very ordinary too on a dry track. She has a victory over dual G1 winner Hey Doc at WFA, so has the class, and she will have been well prepared by a good stable who would have planned for this race. She was ridden upside down when failing second up last preparation so I’d be ignoring that effort. Probably a $10-$12 chance and you can get double that at present, so she is good value.
  6. BAM’S ON FIRE– Very consistent former Perth mare who is very, very fit which is likely to be advantageous on this Heavy track. Any on pace bias is going to help, and she seems to be capable on any going, although she hasn’t been on a Heavy surface yet. She might not be quite good enough on paper, but the track condition brings her right into the mix I feel. She looks to be a solid $10 chance but is nearly twice those odds.
  7.  SPANISH WHISPER– I’m not keen on her because of the track conditions and her profile coming in.
  8.  HUMMA HUMMA– She is yet another who I would have considered a good Each Way chance on a dry track but the weather seems to have conspired against her also. She hasn’t won beyond 1100m and the conditions are only going to make this more of a stamina test.
  9. EMBRACE ME– Has a touch of class being placed against all sexes at WFA, and I’ve always preferred her from a wider barrier, which she gets here. Her only Heavy track run at 1000m was reasonably good down the straight at Flemington and this is her best distance. I thought she would have performed a lot better at her favourite track last start, but perhaps she was ridden a little too close, and maybe the prior start at Flemington flattened her a little bit (very fast time on a hard track). I’m on her at $41 though I’m not confident she can actually win. Given she puts in her best run she is probably an $8-10 chance so why not have something small on her at the massive odds on offer?
  10. BELLA VELLA– Very fast mare who is in peak form and on her home track with some Heavy track form to recommend her. She hasn’t won beyond 1100m though and isn’t well weighted against some of these. She could look the winner in the straight but hard to see her prevailing over the last 100m.
  11. AMBERDI– Very consistent Adelaide mare but not sure she is up to this class and it looks as though she prefers dry. I was quite keen on her last start but she never looked a chance on the wet track. The form around her first up effort was very solid but this is another step up in class for her. Risking her also at the weights on this surface.
  12. EVERYDAY LADY- Adelaide mare who was only beaten 2+ lengths in this race last year and she has good enough wet track form to suggest the surface is going to enhance her chances. Not sure she is quite good enough but on the other hand $151 is ridiculous odds about her. More of a place chance perhaps but I would have thought $25 or so was her true winning odds. Wide barrier looks bad on paper but rarely plays out that way historically.
  13. STREET ICON– Fit and in form, but she has no wet track form of any note, and the class of the race looks a massive stretch for her. A career best effort from her last start but she meets Teleplay 3kg worse off at the weights.
  14. BEAUTIFUL FLYER- Very honest hard fit Adelaide mare who does handle all conditions. She was 5 lengths behind Dalasan and Scales Of Justice in a WFA race last spring here which is probably a good guide to her chances here. Had this been a handicap she’d have a much better chance, but not sure she can win this at level weights. She’s about a $30 hope in my opinion but she is listed at $81 and $17 a place. You could do worse than take the latter especially if the track is Heavy.
  15. LYRE– She looms as some sort of chance in this if she can run to her best. Group 1 placed in the Golden Slipper on a bog track as a 2yo (she had won the Blue Diamond Stakes prior) has been running well without winning of late. Up against the older horses last start she performed admirably and the Blinkers go on her here which is of great interest. She probably needs to find a length or two to win ,and  that improvement with a gear change isn’t impossible. The barrier looks ideal from a historical perspective and she should get her chance. Miracles Of Life won a Blue Diamond Stakes as a 2yo and won this at four years of age.   Her odds look about right.
  16. AWAY GAME– Classy two year old filly who has been running comparative times to the older horse in races up in Sydney of late. For instance she would have run slightly faster time than both I Am Excited and Savatiano last start, and she drops 9kg into this, whereas they carry 2.5kg and 1.5kg less respectively. Potentially she can run 1-1.5 seconds quicker than either of those two mares with her light weight in this. She won on Heavy going box last start and the 47kg here should be an asset on a similar surface. Personally I think if she is come perform to her best here she will win, unless Sunlight produces a career best. The negatives are she is in her first preparation, done a lot of travelling, and she might be intimidated taking on older horses for the first time. Add to that I’d prefer to have seen her draw wider from a historical perspective. She has had her runs spaced though  and has shown no signs of fatigue to date, and has also proven she can travel and win. Interestingly she hasn’t yet placed on a left handed track from two runs, but it should be pointed out she was very unlucky to to at least place in the Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield. Historically a run in Sydney looks good, and so does her price. I’d have her as favourite  but you can still get $4.50 or so, after $6 was offered up early.
  17. KENYAN WONDER– She is first emergency and an unknown on a Heavy track. It was a career best run from her last start and she would need to more than repeat the dose to win this, as she looks poorly weighted on her overall ratings. If she doesn’t run in this she deserves serious consideration in the last race tomorrow though you could say it’s not a hell of a lot easier.

 

Summary;

I have to be with AWAY GAME here. It’s an unusual scenario to see a 2yo run in a race like this but she is a classy one and only a wide barrier and torrid run prevented a lesser performed one (Dubious) from winning a Group 1 race last Winter in Brisbane. She only has to be on her game to prove very hard to beat here. The favourite Sunlight has to be respected as she is weighted to beat every other runner in the race if she is close to her best. For third I’d side with AG’s stablemate Bam’s On Fire who is rock hard fit and has handled up to a Soft 7 surface. I’m also wary because she is the lesser fancied stablemate of my first pick!

Embrace Me is probably the best rough odds chance in the race and Teleplay and Everyday Lady fall into that category also along with Beautiful Flyer who looks more of a place chance. Lyre could be the surprise packet to win the race with the Blinkers going on for the first time. Most of the others would probably prefer a drier surface so I’m happy to risk.

  1. AWAY GAME
  2. Sunlight
  3. Bam’s On Fire
  4. Embrace Me.