The Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) may have undergone many name changes over the years, but it always has the ability to bring together a class field.
Just Horse Racing’s Andrew Hawkins has written this preview for readers:
1. PINWHEEL (8)
Warwick Stakes winner. Has been a different horse this preparation. Kerrin McEvoy said this week, though, that he is probably looking for the mile now. He’s in the mix, but he’ll be hard to beat if he goes to the Toorak.
2. WOORIM (5)
I’ve been laughed down for saying it, but when he gets conditions to suit, this horse has the best turn of foot in Australia. His win in the BRC Sprint was unbelievable. Very good first up. Probably under the odds now but he is the one to beat.
3. DAO DAO (14)
Poor in the autumn, but probably not at his best on wet tracks. Did run third in the Futurity here first up in the spring, and More Joyous/Whobegotyou would be unbackable favourites if they lined up here with 56.5kg. Gets a surface to suit too. He’s a great value chance.
4. TOORAK TOFF (7)
5. DANZYLUM (15)
6. YOSEI (2)
Hopefully I don’t get shot for calling her enigmatic. She has won three Group 1 races, but in between she has shown absolutely nothing. She’s probably better third up, but seeing as it is a Group 1 race I expect her to be at her peak. Over the odds and looks incredible value.
7. LUEN YAT FOREVER (13)
8. PINNACLES (6)
Honest as the day is long. Never the best horse in these races, but he somehow manages to run out of his skin. He even ran third in the 2008 Doncaster. He’s recaptured his old form this campaign, and I wouldn’t be shocked if he finished in the placings.
9. SILVER GRECIAN (4)
The query runner of the field. Former boom juvenile in the UK, before transferring to John Moore’s yeard in Hong Kong. It took a long time for him to come right, but his last win was superb. His work has been good and on his best, he could be a very nice chance.
10. TESTASCANA (16)
A winner of the Heatherlie Handicap over 1700m last start, he drops in distance here. He is the winter find which we see every year, the emerging type who keeps on winning. The bad draw makes a tough task even harder though. Place at very best.
11. BLACKIE (12)
12. MASTER OF DESIGN (10)
Well bred commodity who has had plenty of issues throughout his career. Very good winner of the Sebring Sprint last start. Based on that, it is hard to dismiss him – but it depends which Master of Design turns up. Chance on last start.
13. SMART MISSILE (17)
Boom Sydney three year old who has to cope with the outside gate and a change of jockey. I reckon he’s just about the best horse in the race, and he’s definitely the best weighted. But he needs a lot to go right. He’ll be in the mix somewhere though.
14. DREAMAWAY (9)
WA Derby winner who was hopelessly unlucky first up. She should have placed. She knows how to win, but I would have liked to see her up in distance – perhaps to 1600m – second up. Still, she’s a chance.
15. MAJESTIC MUSIC (3)
16. GOLD SALUTE (11)
17. JUNGLE RULER (1)
What an open field. There’s probably only five or six I reckon can’t win. This is the sort of race where you back two or three horses and hope it pays off. I’m going to be boring and put WOORIM on top. I’ve been waiting twelve months to back him in this race. Now the day is here, I’m hoping he can atone for last year. For second, I’m going for YOSEI. Group 1 winner three times, twice at 1400m and the other one was at Caulfield, so I can’t conceivably imagine why she is $26. For third, I’m going to go with DAO DAO. 1400m, Caulfield, good track – all very suitable for him. Another who is over the odds. Next best TOORAK TOFF. I’d probably have Silver Grecian and Smart Missile just behind those four. Tough race!
2 – WOORIM
6 – YOSEI
3 – DAO DAO
4 – TOORAK TOFF