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An eight race program has been set down for Canterbury on Friday where the feature race is the Christmas Classic (1200m). The weather is fine, the track is soft (7) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.

Christmas Classic 🏆: View the Field and Odds for the Christmas Classic

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Race 1. (16:40) Bowermans Comm. Furniture Mdn 1100m

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Back Me

I’m with 3 Comporta (Bet Now: $4.20) in the opener. Chris Waller trained filly that is on debut. Daughter of Kermadec that is having start one and has been given a good grounding with several preps. Two trials to get ready for this prep and has moved quite well each time. Draws the inside, so should hold a forward spot and prove hard to beat against these.


8 Virgo (Bet Now: $3.30) is knocking on the door to break her maiden tag. James Cummings trained filly that has placed in both runs back from a break, the latest coming over 1150m on the Kenso track where she kept chasing and though safely held, battled away well to run second. Hard fit now, leading contender.

Long Shot

6 Single Tonite (Bet Now: $5.00) is a Not A Single Doubt filly for the John O’Shea camp that resumes. Showed good promise in her first prep, placing on debut. Trials leading in have been quite good and on breeding, should swim. Gets Rachel King to steer as well, so has a bit going for her.

Race 2. (17:20) Hyland Race Colours Mdn Hcp 1250m

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Back Me

The unknown about how the track will play is the only thing stopping me from declaring 3 April Rain (Bet Now: $1.95). I think this time next year, she will be a Stakes winner. She’s really good. Should have won here on debut this time last year when beaten narrowly. Trials leading in have been outstanding. Track bias is the only thing beating her I feel.


1 Saint Of Katowice (Bet Now: $3.60) is having his second run in Australia after formerly racing in the UK. Made his Australian debut at Wyong when leading and fighting on strongly, just missing out on the win when nailed late by Resilient Star. Lands in front here and will take some running down.

Long Shot

8 Doppelpunkt (Bet Now: $9.50) is one to keep an eye on from a SP perspective. Debuted at Newcastle where she was well tried, starting a $2.6 favourite. Not sure she would have won but should have finished much closer in an encouraging debut. Near double figures here so from a SP perspective, she’s likeable.

Race 3. (18:00) The Agency Real Estate Mdn Hcp 1250m

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Back Me

7 Blaze Seven (Bet Now: $4.00) gets the nod for me. John O’Shea trained filly that is having start two in Australia after starting her career in New Zealand. Made her Australian debut in the Winter at Kembla where she was held up for a few strides, but overall, she was disappointing. Been given a good break and thought her recent trials have been very good.


11 Hot Spring Gold (Bet Now: $4.80) is a son of Written Tycoon for Chris Waller that resumes. This guy has had a few chances to break the maiden tag and has been close up on a number of occasions. Just hasn’t quite got the job done. Has the runs on the board in terms of the raced brigade and draws well.

Long Shot

12 Ananagram (Bet Now: $20.00) is one I could entertain for wider multiples. Scott Singleton trained three year old gelding that resumed over 1100m at Scone on a bottomless track where he was back off the speed and worked home well. Suited up in trip and can run top four.

Race 4. (18:30) Anz Bloodstock News (bm72) 1900m

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Back Me

Why is 8 He’s A Given (Bet Now: $9.00) double figures? Could argue he is the best wet tracker trained in Sydney and with conditions to suit, I think he’s a great each way bet at the price. He was very good in defeat last time out on the Kenso track, closing off strongly off a moderate speed. Better luck here and think he can win.


2 Merlinite (Bet Now: $3.40) is bursting to win a race for John O’Shea. Has finished runner up in both runs back from a spell. Latest run came here and I think you could easily make a case to say he should have won. Just didn’t get the clearest of paths in the straight. He’s going super and can take this out.

Long Shot

7 Into The Oblivion (Bet Now: $21.00) does love racing on wet ground and that is the conditions he should get here so think he’s good value at $20+. Ran on Boxing Day at Newcastle and worked home well from off the speed. He will need luck in running, but is a must for exotics despite a poor racing pattern for how this track has played in recent times.

Race 5. (19:00) Schweppes (bm72) 1100m

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Back Me

Not surprised there has been early support for 9 Diva Bella (Bet Now: $6.00). Resumes for Claire Lever, having not raced since the Winter where she worked home well at Rosehill behind the in form Varda. She seems to like wet ground and the recent Hawkesbury trial was solid. Gets a soft gate and the 3kg claim certainly helps.


6 Front Money (Bet Now: $3.60) does have talent for Team Hawkes but at times she can let punters down and that was the case when she resumed on the Kenso track. Seemed to get an ideal sit just off the speed but couldn’t quicken and just whacked away late when fourth to Lillemor. This race lacks overall depth and she maps well.

Long Shot

8 Trophies Galore (Bet Now: $31.00) has the engine under the hood to measure up here. This mare resumes, having not raced since September 1 at Newcastle when down the track behind Front Money. No public trials to get ready, so a bit of guessing re fitness levels, but she has a big finish on her.

Race 6. (19:30) Christmas Classic 1200m

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Back Me

Like 7 Eleven Eleven (Bet Now: $4.20) here. He is on his way to the Magic Millions and comes into this lead up in winning form after being dominant in the Wyong 3&4YO Magic Millions. Did he beat much? Probably not, but he was dominant. Tricky draw on paper, but should get three wide cover off a good speed and launch late.


11 Discharged (Bet Now: $5.50) looks to be flying. WaterBott trained four year old that resumes and looks to be spot on for his resumption with a couple of solid trials under the belt to get ready, the latest seeing him bolt up. Has the speed to come across, likely sit outside Spaceboy, and prove tough to beat.

Long Shot

12 Spaceboy (Bet Now: $7.50) does look the map horse. Should get to the front first and I think he will hold up and hold out Discharged. Led and stuck on well in the Eleven Eleven race mentioned above. If this track plays to its usual pattern, he is going to take some running down.

Race 7. (20:00) Kia Evening Star (bm72) 1250m

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Back Me

This does look to be D-Day for 5 Super Contender (Bet Now: $3.40), to see if he is indeed a contender or is a pretender. He’s been hard in the mark both runs back from a break, each coming here, and has been safely held both runs. The claim for JVO helps and most impressive win has come on wet ground.


4 Catapult (Bet Now: $3.40) is bursting to win a race for Richard Litt. Looked like it would come here last time out when he burst to the front and looked home, but was bloused near the peg by Smart Image, who looks a Magic Millions Guineas contender, so the form does read well for this.

Long Shot

1 General Soho (Bet Now: $9.00), on paper, doesn’t have the best of records at Canterbury, but if you dig deep enough, you’ll see that he’s only really run one bad race here, and a few times has been unlucky not to win. Back to 1250m from 1400m last time at Canterbury behind I Am Vinnie I do like, should get a soft run and be strong late.

Race 8. (20:30) Tab (bm72) 1550m

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Back Me

Having a throw at the stumps in the get out via 14 Miss Jenny (Bet Now: $21.00). She’s a swimmer, she draws soft and is down in the weights, so think she can run a positive race at a big price. Her recent efforts haven’t been too bad and she does get conditions to suit here. 1×3 at the big price.


1 Invasion Day (Bet Now: $5.50) is the clear unknown on wet ground. Done a really good job this time in, winning his first two runs for the prep before going to Warwick Farm when a close up fourth to Criminal Code, who went close to winning last Saturday, so the form reads well. His wet track form is suspect, so wait and see what the market does and how the track plays.

Long Shot

15 Sam Spade (Bet Now: $6.00) is another that won’t mind some juice in the track. Team Curtis trained gelding that has done a good job this time in and is bursting to win one. Looked like it would come at Hawkesbury last time but had to settle for a second to Tri Nations. Has upside to come and the wet track should mean the wide gate isn’t too bad.

Best Bets & Quaddie Tips

BEST BET: Race Four Number 8 He’s A Given

NEXT BEST: Race Two Number 3 April Rain

LONG SHOT: Race Eight Number 14 Miss Jenny


Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):

Leg One: 3, 6, 8, 9

Leg Two: 7, 8, 11, 12

Leg Three: 4, 5

Leg Four: 1, 6, 7, 14, 15

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