The Ascot Carnival simmers along nicely this Saturday for Lee Steere Stakes Day. The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is out six metres for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (14:54) Cystic Fibrosis WA Plate 1100m
Keen to see 5 Cup Night (Bet Now: $5.00) at this level and what he can do. He won a OMW race a couple of Wednesdays back at this track/distance and gee he was impressive, letting down with a powerful finale to get the job done and run decent late splits. Toughest test to date here but confident he can measure up.
8 Dance Music (Bet Now: $3.00) is a Simon Miller trained filly who is six weeks between runs since her unbeaten run came to an end when a battling fourth to Pablo’s Poem after doing work in the run and before the race where she had a real attitude. Pike remains on which is a good lead and her wins prior were impressive.
9 Stares Andwhispers (Bet Now: $26.00) is a daughter of Lope De Vega for Sean Casey who resumed over 1000m here last Wednesday where she sat just near the speed and looked to travel well under Bonnie Palise but just couldn’t quite finish it off when second to Stormy Ora. Harder here, but is down in the weights and should get a good run from the draw.
Race 2. (15:35) Ballpoint Construction Handicap (66+) 1200m
Just needs to overcome the gate and 2 In Love With Paris (Bet Now: $2.70) will take some beating here. This gelding resumed at this track/distance where he had cover throughout before Noske eased him wide on the turn and he surged hard but couldn’t get past Stageman. If he can overcome a wide gate, he’ll look the winner I’m sure.
3 One Short (Bet Now: $11.00) is a son of Snippetson resuming for Steve Wolfe. This gelding had a pretty decent Autumn/Winter campaign, which saw him win a couple of races, including one over 1400m at Belmont. Good fresh horse and trialled really well at Albany to my eye. If he’s forward enough, he’s got the ability to figure in the finish.
6 Pearl Trade (Bet Now: $10.00) is an Alan Matthews trained mare that resumes. She was around the mark for the most part in her Winter prep without winning but did come close on a couple of occasions. The Hoof Pads are off, so is her feet good now? Right down in the weights after the claim, inside gate…huge watch.
Race 3. (16:25) Devwest Handicap (72+) 2200m
I said last Saturday prior to the race that 3 Mississippi Delta (Bet Now: $2.60) could be a sleeper for the Perth Cup and after the win she produced, she’s more than a sleeper. She’s in the game big time in terms of the up and comers. The way she savaged the line late was that of a really good stayer and provided she handles the seven day up, she should be winning despite potential traffic issues from gate one.
1 Salon Du Cheval (Bet Now: $3.10) is another up and comer likely heading towards the Perth Cup. This bloke ran over 2100m here a fortnight back where he got into a real tussle with the in form Five Degrees but eventually got the better and edged clear late. Creeping up in the weights but is a proven weight carrier and should take beating.
8 Queen Bey (Bet Now: $15.00) is a handy staying mare for Team Williams who is four weeks between runs since racing at Bunbury (Metro) where she just got too far back in the run but closed off with real purpose late when a narrow third to Noir De Rue. If she can sit closer in the run, I think she’ll be dangerous.
Race 4. (17:05) Express Interior Design Handicap (72+) 1100m
The second up record is a tad suspect but the speed map says 4 Misty Metal (Bet Now: $6.00) will look the winner for the most part. Resumed over 1000m here a fortnight ago where she was wide no cover for the second half of the race and just ran out of puff late when third to Showcase. Should lead these for fun and give a great sight.
8 Stageman (Bet Now: $1.60) is a quality son of Written Tycoon for the Williams camp who won over 1200m here a fortnight back and it was largely down to a sweet steer from Pike that got him home in a race which looked strong. Back 100m a little query but he’ll be strong late and Pike does elect to steer him.
9 Viking Forrest (Bet Now: $51.00) is over a month between runs since contesting the Hannans during the Kalgoorlie Carnival where he was somewhat outclassed but far from disgraced behind Reykjavik. Has a good record at Ascot, sprints well fresh and can hold a decent enough spot from the inside barrier.
Race 5. (17:40) Ascot Gold Cup 1800m
Contender or pretender time for 4 Royal Star (Bet Now: $3.40). Needed the run first up at Bunbury (Metro) before going to the Northam Cup where the Blinkers went on, I thought she was a good thing and despite not getting much room early on in the straight, I thought she had her chance when fourth to Pushin Shapes. Third up, she should just about be ready to go, and at her best, she’s better than these.
7 Elegant Blast (Bet Now: $6.50) is a Justin Warwick trained mare who was very good in the Northam Cup. She was three pairs back on the outside and pulling a bit so the fact she was able to attack the line when second to Pushin Shapes was a gutsy effort. Needs to harness her energy and if she can, she’ll take beating.
10 Missile Launch (Bet Now: $5.00) looks as if he could potentially launch big time third up. Just needed the run fresh at Bunbury (Metro) and perhaps was much the same in the Northam Cup but sitting back off a moderate gallop, I thought he did really well to close off. He can sit closer from the good draw and is 2/2 third up.
Race 6. (18:15) Lee Steere Stakes 1400m
Interesting that 8 Enticing Star (Bet Now: $1.95) goes to the 1400m here. Does this rule out the Winterbottom? Either way, I think she’ll be winning here. She’s indeed a star and is 8/8 to start her career. Been well placed by the Williams camp but she took on the boys last time in the Birthday Stakes and was dominant. She’ll eat up 1400m and you never know how good they are til they’re beaten.
Great to see 1 Scales Of Justice (Bet Now: $5.00) back at the races. Classy animal who hasn’t raced since the Carnival last year where he pulled up with issues post race in the Railway behind Great Shot. Been given time off and has looked great in a couple of trials leading in. Gate one a big tick. He can sit handy and will likely have a start on Enticing Star.
5 Gatting (Bet Now: $71.00) is an absolute ripper who resumes. He’s probably a length or two off the top tier WA horses but one thing he doesn’t lack is toughness and courage, which was there to see during the Winter behind Material Man. Loves racing at Ascot and likely gets the suck run behind Scales Of Justice.
Race 7. (18:50) Fairetha Stakes 1400m
Really not sure what to do here. I’ve landed with 5 True Defender (Bet Now: $10.00). Team Williams has this gelding, who hasn’t raced for nine weeks since scoring a narrow but sharp win over 1400m at Belmont under a confident steer from Pike. Loses nothing with Parnham taking over and he should get the run of the race.
4 The Velvet King (Bet Now: $7.00) is a talented three year who is first up. Ran three times during the Winter, winning a couple of races, and though there was nothing brilliant about him, he did show some ticker when challenged. Sharp Lark Hill trial win, looks the leader and will look the winner at some stage I’m sure.
In terms of the Team Williams, I would have thought on form that 13 Regal Power (Bet Now: $7.50) is the bottom seed but Pike has chosen to ride him, so my ears are pricked. Desperately unlucky a couple of Wednesdays back here, but the race was thin depth wise. The Winkers go on and Pike elects him. Definite watch.
Race 8. (19:30) Tabtouch- Better Your Bet Handicap (1MW) 1600m
Looks a good race for the Neville Parnham trained 2 Ouqba Jack (Bet Now: $4.00). Ran over the mile here a fortnight back where he was wide no cover for the trip yet despite doing the work, he hit the front and looked home, only to be bloused late. Was strong market support that afternoon and draws better this time around. Happy to be in his corner.
Convinced that 8 Blackwood River (Bet Now: $3.60) has the engine under the hood to indeed win this and threaten in the WA Guineas. Just not sure he’s there mentally. Bit of an ugly watch if you were on last Wednesday over 1500m here but in saying that, I thought he had his chance late to beat Unikat. Gate one and down in the weights again helps his cause.
6 Jaspara (Bet Now: $46.00) could be a sleeper at odds. Ran over 1400m here last time where he got held up a touch in the run when seemingly having something to offer and should have finished closer when midfield behind the classy filly Arcadia Queen. 1600m looks ideal and should get clear air from the draw. One for multiples.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Six Number 8 Enticing Star
NEXT BEST: Race Three Number 3 Mississippi Delta
LONG SHOT: Race One Number 5 Cup Night
Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):
Leg One: 1, 4, 7, 10
Leg Two: 1, 8
Leg Three: 1, 4, 5, 13
Leg Four: 2, 4, 5, 6, 8
$50 Investment= 31.25% of the dividend if successful
All odds are subject to change. Odds listed are correct at the time of the latest update.
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