One of the feature events of the day is The Zipping Classic. Owner of Zipping, Lloyd Williams, appears set to add another edition of this race to Zipping’s four wins with two entrants including race favourite, Mourayan @ $2.60.
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1. MOURAYAN – J Bowman (1)
A tough stayer who won the G3 Craven Plate (2000m) at WFA, the same conditions of today’s race, two starts back before a cheeky effort in last week’s Melbourne Cup where he finished seventh behind stable-mate Green Moon. From the inside gate he’ll lead or at least be handy and as he has proven in the past, will be very hard to run down once he hits the front.
2. PRECENDENCE – B Shinn (3)
Won second up this prep but in four subsequent runs, his best finish has been a fourth behind Vatuvei in the Moonee Valley Gold Cup two starts back. He competed in the Melbourne Cup as well and finished the race well for a ninth, beaten 6.1 lengths. The WFA conditions are not ideal but this year’s edition of the Zipping is not a vintage one.
3. TANBY – N Hall (7)
Stable-mate to Mourayan who, courtesy of a good ride, won the Listed Bart Cummings three starts back defeating Maluckyday and carrying 55.5kgs. Ran in the Lexus on Derby Day (4.8 lengths behind Kelinni) and in the Queen Elizabeth last weekend finishing third to Puissance De Lune. Lines up for his third run in a fortnight but the WFA conditions should find him out.
4. HE’S HOT TO TROT – D Toureur (6)
He ran ninth in this year’s Adelaide Cup (3200m) behind Rialya The 6yo by Galileo has been placed in each of his past four starts but they’ve been in Restricted races in Adelaide. Given the condition and class of this race, he won’t know what’s hit him during this run.
5. GARUD – K McEvoy (5)
Lightly raced 5yo High Chaparral gelding who does appear to have his fair share of ability but think he’ll be better placed for a race like this in 12 months time. He bolted in with blinkers on at Geelong, albeit in a restricted race but off that win, was well supported on Cup Day in a Rst 95 event. He loomed up but found the promising Verdant too strong late and ran second (beaten 1 ¼ ).
6. UMATIC – D Dunn (4)
His last two win have come in RST 68 events with one being at Seymour and the other, at Swan Hill when first up this preparation. In six runs since his Swan Hill victory, he han’t registered a place and it’ll come as a massive shock if he were to break that habit here.
7. EXCEPTIONALLY – D Yendall (8)
Smart mare who has been placed four of her past five starts including a third in the G3 Naturalism, G2 Herbert Power and at her most recent start, G3 Lexus on Derby Day. Each of the above runs were under different weight conditions than the WFA scale she faces today but she is better form than most here.
8. DAME CLAIRE – P Mertens (9)
A mare in career best form and who was third in the Listed Bart Cummings three starts back before close up efforts in both the G3 David Jones and G3 Lexus – where she led on both occasions. Like most here, new to the WFA conditions and did lead at her last two starts. If she were to take that approach today, I can only see Mourayan stalking here the entire trip and being too strong.
9. RAWNAQ – C Schofield (2)
An interesting to see him in this field when acceptances came out. As a 3yo, he carries the featherweight of 50.5kgs and is coming off a third in the G1 VRC Derby (2500m) a fortnight ago. Jockey claimed post race that he should’ve won and he did give the impression that he will stay all day.
Jump on the $2.60 about Mourayan. He was a similar price when he won the Craven Plate and he accounted for a better field then, then he faces here today. He’s proven at WFA, is a tough on pacer and it is hard to imagine any other runner in this race being able to better his effort in the Melbourne Cup. He’ll be in the firing line all the way and has a great association with his Jockey Hugh Bowman.