As is the case nearly every year, a big field has been assembled for the Group l Sir Rupert Clarke (1400m) on Saturday at Caulfield. At the time of writing (Thursday morning), the track is rated a Good 4, but with rain forecast for Friday and Saturday, that may change and we might get to a Soft5/6 depending on how much hits the track.
Down below is a speed map, runner preview and $100 betting strategy for the 2021 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes.
2021 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes Speed Map
Blink and you’ll miss this race. There are a stack of go forward horses, no less than four, that love to control things from in front, so I’m anticipating a very strong tempo, which should give the likes of Beau Rossa, Probabeel and Behemoth suck runs in behind. Aysar and Amish Boy should be able to get three wide cover and get their chance to launch late, likewise Sierra Sue.
2021 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes Runner Preview
1. Behemoth: His bread and butter is the Caulfield 1400m and is looking to repeat the dose from 12 months ago of winning the Memsie/Sir Rupert Clarke double. Brilliant steer from Prebble was a big reason why he won the Memsie I thought a few weeks ago. Draws to get a lovely run and Craig Williams gets on with him very well. He did win the race with 60kg last year, so down 1kg on that, but the depth looks far greater and I think he’s a risk.
2. Probabeel: She is a mare carrying 57kg, but I don’t think she’s too badly in. Class got her home first up in the Cockram against the mares with 60kg. Prebble jumps off Behemoth to ride this girl, with a commitment for the Spring the reason for that. Proven big time performer in handicaps that gets run of the race from the draw. The only knock is the weather. She’s a dry tracker, so she doesn’t want too much rain.
3. Streets Of Avalon: I don’t think he’s going any good. Led and had every chance in the Feehan two weeks ago when fifth to Superstorm in a race that rated poorly. Back to 1400m and Olly on are two big ticks, he’ll roll forward, but I think his best days are behind him.
4. Dalasan: $61+ for this guy is just ridiculous. He is a very good horse when right and is being priced on what he did first up, which was nothing at the Valley, but IMO, that was just a barrier trial, and he actually wasn’t too bad late. Draws out, gets three/four wide cover, I can see him launching at them late and wouldn’t shock me if he won because his best is good enough.
5. Beau Rossa: I’m shocked he has come up favourite. He was the unlucky run in the Memsie when a narrow second to Behemoth, but beware the unlucky runner in an ordinary race, and while the Memsie was a Group l race, it didn’t rate through the roof and the form didn’t stack up in the Makybe Diva last week, so with that in mind, I’m risking that form and therefore risking this guy. False favourite IMO.
6. Buffalo River: He’s a smart horse when right. Resumes for Michael Moroney, having not raced since a down the track effort in the Doncaster Prelude at Rosehill in the Autumn. Two solid jumpouts to get ready, he’ll press forward and give a sight. His problem is between the ears. He’s a fruit loop on occasion and can get very keen so if you like him, you’re hoping Pat Moloney can whisper sweet nothings to get him to relax.
7. Sierra Sue: Similar to Beau Rossa, unlucky last start, but it was a poor rating race. That race being the Feehan. Not hard to figure out that with a clear path, she likely wins the race instead of a hard held fifth. Prior to that, she did win an average PB Lawrence. Map looks okay for her, three wide cover and blend in. Just not sure she’s up to these.
8. Groundswell: Four of his six career wins have come when he has led, had control and dominated from the front. Got conditions to suit two back at Flemington, then last time out here, had to take a sit and he didn’t respond. He’ll be on speed in a high pressure race and that seals his fate.
9: Aysar: He is one of a number of runners in the race at big odds I could speck. Jury was out after the resumption at Flemington, but last start at the Valley, there were signs he was back on track with an encouraging effort behind Express Pass. The Mounting Yard experts keep saying this guy is looking a beast. If he runs up to his looks, he’ll run a positive race at a big price and a win wouldn’t shock.
10: Irish Flame: Not sure what the GF is for this guy, but it was such an encouraging return at the Valley behind Express Pass. Sat back in the run and finished off his race with real purpose when third. He’s down in the weights, got enormous upside and should be strong late. The set up is there for him to run well…I just would be shocked if he won given he is better suited at 2000m.
11. Romancer: Impossible to get a read on him given the unorthodox prep he has had. Won fresh in May, had six weeks off and finished down the track. Then had another five weeks off followed by a two run prep, that latest run being a month ago. Fresh does seem best for him so can understand that aspect, but I can’t see him troubling them as a winning threat.
12. Samizdat: From memory, the only horse the Gangemi team has brought over to Melbourne in recent years is their veteran sprinter Rock Magic, and he was always thereabouts in good sprint races. Samizdat is the X Factor. Can’t underestimate the WA raiders when they come across because more often than not, they measure up. I will say though his form is more off season WA form and not their proper carnival form, so he needs to improve, but has a very much in form Froggy Newitt to steer.
13: Amish Boy: The term ‘Non Winner’ gets thrown about too often. Yes, there are some that hate the winning post, but this guy, despite only winning one race, isn’t that. He does chase the line, but just keeps finding one or two better, which was the case first up here when bloused late by Masked Crusader, who would be odds on against these. He’ll get three wide cover, peel into clear air and be strong late. He’s a must in terms of a betting proposition, as you’ll see down below.
14. Dice Roll: He’s a real unknown this guy. Looked a Sir Rupert Clarke horse from early on last prep, but punters fell out of love with him after two failures at the mile. Freshened up, resuming at his pet trip with only 52kg on his back, with a good trial on Monday to get ready, I think he runs well. Could I back him to win? At the odds on offer, $26+, yes I could.
15. Regardsmaree: Ran last Saturday over 1400m at Flemington in The Sofitel. Had a suck run behind the speed and was there to be a winning threat, but couldn’t quite go on with it and had to settle for a fifth. Fabulous stats at the track/distance, but on class, he struggles.
16. Poland: Blinkers go back on this four year old, who was okay late behind Masked Crusader in the race mentioned above that Amish Boy ran second in. Much better suited at 1400m, and he does have a big rating win at this track/distance from the Autumn. But I can’t entertain him.
17(First Emergency). I’m Thunderstruck: He looks a live Golden Eagle contender should they head that way. Not quite there 100% upstairs, but no doubting his engine is a Group class engine. A Group l engine? Only time will tell, but he’s right down in the weights, in form, will sit back and be charging late with that turn of foot we know he has. Just needs to gain a run.
2021 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes $100 Betting Strategy:
There are a number of ways you could go here. I think the safe option in the race is Probabeel, provided we don’t get too much rain. I’ll have $50 win on her via top tote/fluc. Top tote/fluc on five other runners, $10 win. They are Dalasan, Aysar, Amish Boy, Dice Roll and I’m Thunderstruck
Group l Strategy Outlay: $300
Group l Strategy Return: $90