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One of the greatest race mares in Australian racing history is Makybe Diva and the three time Melbourne Cup winner has the the Group l Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) named in her honour for her wonderful deeds on the first Tuesday in Novemeber at ‘Headquarters’, and it is that race that will be the drawcard this Saturday at Flemington. The weather is overcast, the track is soft (5) and the rail is out two metres for the entire circuit.




Race One (12:25) : Sofitel Girls’ Day Out 2500 2500m:

Back Me: 6 Lucques (Bet Now: $5.50) ran over 2040m at the Valley three weeks back and tried hard as he always does when finishing a close up fourth to Bold Sniper, beaten 2.45L. He won at this track/distance earlier in the year, and he does have upside. This isn’t a strong race, and he will be solid at the end, so I’m happy to be in his corner.
Big Danger: 7 O’Lonera (Bet Now: $3.60) has been a real find this Winter for Cindy Alderson and he was just so impressive in winning last time out at Caulfield, though he was helped by a field filled with jockeys lacking any initiative. Up to 2500 is no issue and he rates highly.
Roughie: 5 Refectory (Bet Now: $8.50) is a rejuvenated galloper who is loving his racing at the moment, winning his past two, the latest coming over 2500m at the Valley three weeks ago when proving too tough for Black Tomahawk, who got down to $1.01 in live betting when bolting up on the turn. Against more quality is the negative, but he is hard fit, tough and in form.


Race Two (13:00) : Cap D’Antibes Stakes 1100m:

Back Me: Was really surprised to see 15 Getemhel (Bet Now: $11.00) start $14 when resuming at Geelong given how well she looked in a jump out prior, and she proved that jump out wasn’t a one off because she absolutely bolted in and spanked them. Given a little break since then, and has tuned up with another sharp jump out last week at Flemington. Rises significantly in grade, but she is very likeable.
Big Danger: 4 My Country (Bet Now: $6.00) is a talented filly that resumes for Team Snowden and is another from the astute stable that looks well placed. She had two runs in the Winter, starting off with a win at Kembla Grange before getting the job done in the Lancaster (1200m) during the Winter Carnival in Brisbane. Rosehill trial on August 15 looked pretty good and stable is one of the best at placement.
Roughie: 6 So Serene (Bet Now: $26.00) looked very nice at the jump outs here prior to resuming on the Geelong Synthetic where she didn’t beat much in her maiden triumph, but she did it comfortably and ran solid time for the afternoon. Has always promised a fair bit from day one, and she gets another chance to prove it on a big stage.


Race Three (13:35) : Starlight Express Room Stakes 1400m:

Back Me: Really keen to see how 13 Inspired Estelle (Bet Now: $19.00) measures up. Her two runs during the Winter were very good, with the latter resulting in a spank job at Sandown. Good break to target the Spring and gee she couldn’t have trialled better at Pakenham recently when leading throughout and winning under triple wraps. I am prepared to take the gamble.
Big Danger: The spacious surroundings of Flemington should really suit the Ciaron Maher trained 5 Throssell (Bet Now: $9.00). He resumed in the McKenzie at the Valley and despite not really handling the tight turns, he balanced up and finished off with real purpose behind Ken’s Dream. He’ll love the step up to 1400m, he has upside and he will be strong late compared to most here who are a risk.
Roughie: 9 Urban Ruler (Bet Now: $9.00) resumed at Sandown over 1300m on August 24 and showed really good fight down the entire straight to get the job done narrowly but impressively under hard riding from Oliver. Perhaps ridden upside down to suit the pattern also, which adds merit to the win, because the two runs in the Autumn he was ridden with cover and near the back. Hard to beat.


Race Four (14:15) : The Sofitel 1400m:

Back Me: Going for some value in the shape of 2 Hi World (Bet Now: $8.50). I thought his jump outs were quite encouraging prior to resuming at Caulfield where he sat on speed and just felt the pinch late behind the quality galloper He’s Our Rokkii. He was a market drifter that day and did seem to have a belly on him, so I think he’ll improve off that, he has a solid second up record, and I think ridden with cover he can bounce back hard.
Big Danger: 9 Prince Of Brooklyn (Bet Now: $4.80) ran second to He’s Our Rokkii at Caulfield and his effort in defeat was very good given he did give the eventual winner the perfect drag up into the race. He’s been up for a while, but continues to race very well, he’s hard fit and in superb form. Rates highly.
Roughie: 11 Bon Aurum (Bet Now: $7.50) carried the grandstand when resuming at Caulfield two weeks back where he got back in the run and closed off nice late nearer the inside behind Lord Barrington. He contested some high class races during his 3YO season and did beat home some quality animals, so he can measure up here for sure.


Race Five (14:50) : Danehill Stakes 1200m:

Back Me: Going with 10 Wazzenme (Bet Now: $11.00). Worked home okay first up in the Vain behind Russian Revolution before going to the McNeil where he worked home strongly late to run a close up third to Defcon. He looks as though he’ll get a nice sit off the tempo and blend in at the right time. Great each way bet for mine.
Big Danger: The interesting runner is the kiwi visitor 3 Saracino (Bet Now: $6.50). The Baker/Forsman trained runner comes here off the back of a dominant first up win at Te Rapa in the Foxbridge Plate where he was really well placed at WFA and he bolted in, beating home some seasoned Group l performers. Stable know which horses can measure up down under, so he is a big watch.
Roughie: 12 Samara Dancer (Bet Now: $10.00) is a high class filly that resumes for Phillip Stokes. She was a dominant winner of the Blue Diamond Prelude before failing in the Blue Diamond when well fancied. She has had two trials leading in for her return, so she’ll be forward enough for sure IMO, and the stable rarely leaves Melbourne without success.


Race Six (15:30) : Bobbie Lewis Quality 1200m:

Back Me: I think 1 Under The Louvre (Bet Now: $5.50) picks himself here. He was enormous when resuming at Caulfield over 1100m, giving away a huge start on the up and running and noted speedster Redzel and ran him down to under a half length in a huge effort. He produced an amazing performance in this race last year but he looks to be going much better 12 months on. The one to beat. I am keen to take on the kiwi Xtravagant. I haven’t been impressed by what I’ve seen at the jump outs/work, and for mine he is a real risk for the Spring.
Big Danger: 8 Santa Ana Lane (Bet Now: $7.00) resumed in that Redzel race and he was very good with no luck at all in the straight. He got caught between two runners and never really got a clear crack until very late where he charged to the line nearer the inside. That was a terrific pointer for this, and I am sure he would have had a look in work down the straight, so that’s not an issue.
Roughie: 5 Durendal (Bet Now: $21.00) is a very talented sprinter that resumes for the Ellerton/Zahra stable. He had one in the latter part of the Autumn over this track/distance in the Straight Six (1200m) when running a close up fourth to talented mare Nautical. Prior to that, he was unbeaten at this track/distance and in one of those wins, he beat home Churchill Dancer, who won the Bobbie Lewis last year, beating Under The Louvre.


Race Seven (16:10) : PFD Food Services Makybe Diva Stakes 1600m:

Back Me: You’d be happy to take any price for 3 Black Heart Bart (Bet Now: $2.40) I think. Not enough superlatives to cover his first up win in the Memsie when ridden a treat by Rawiller, camping off a hot speed before peeling at the right time and charging through the line. He is yet to race second up at the mile in five previous attempts, which is the only knock against him. But he is too good for these I think. Put it this way, nothing from the Memsie will turn the tables here.
Big Danger: If we got a heavy track, I’d declare 4 Our Ivanhowe (Bet Now: $10.00). This high class stayer stamped himself as a horse for the Spring after producing a brilliant finish to win the Doomben Cup, beating home Hauraki, who of course came out to win the Tramway last weekend. His latest jump out was outstanding and all the talk from the stable in regards to this horse has been nothing but glowing. He is set for a big Spring.
Roughie: D-Day is here for 8 Alpine Eagle (Bet Now: $15.00). Trialled well prior to resuming in the Memsie where he came off the bit a fair way out and plugged away okay without being brilliant behind Black Heart Bart. The positives are that he is fitter, he is a second up winner and his two runs at Flemington have resulted in a head second to Wandjina in the Guineas and 0.8L sixth to Fawkner in the Makybe Diva last year.


Race Eight (16:50) : Let’s Elope Stakes 1400m:

Back Me: In terms of weighted runners, 12 Telopea (Bet Now: $8.50) looks well placed. She, like most here, ran in the Cockram where she got back in the run and closed off okay late behind the flying Ocean Embers. She saves her best for Flemington, especially at 1400m, and given her rating, she is well weighted.
Big Danger: Gee If you backed 2 Don’t Doubt Mamma (Bet Now: $6.50) in the Cockram it was tough to watch. She got back near last and in awful traffic and by the time she got clear, Ocean Embers was off and gone but it was a lovely return. Another that has a liking for Flemington and some of her best wins have come at the track/distance.
Roughie: 15 French Emotion (Bet Now: $7.50) rises in grade and depth but is certainly one to watch. She resumed at the Valley three weeks ago and was luckless in the straight behind Catch A Fire, held up most of the way before getting clear very late. Very good second up record and is on the minimum. A definite improver and threat.


Race Nine (17:25) : Spring Is The Season Handicap 1700m:

Back Me: Going with the Hayes/Dabernig trained 11 Gabella (Bet Now: $7.50). She resumed against the mares at Caulfield a fortnight back and had no luck at all in the straight behind Vibrant Rouge, but not long after the post, she was in front. She will eat up the extra trip here, gets weight relief and is trained on the track.
Big Danger: 4 Big Memory (Bet Now: $8.50) is the class runner engaged here and looks hard to beat. Was due to run in the Balaklava Cup last week but the distance change saw him withdrawn. That aside, his two trials leading in have been sharp and first up at 1700m indicates he is forward enough.
Roughie: Really good roughie here is 12 Zanteca (Bet Now: $41.00). She ran at Moonee Valley three weeks ago and closed off very nicely from the back behind Royal Rapture in a race where it was difficult to make ground. You only have to go back to this time last year and she pushed Excess Knowledge in the Lexus and arguably should have won thus running in the Melbourne Cup. Great outside chance.


BEST BET: Race Six Number 1 Under The Louvre

NEXT BEST: Race Seven Number 3 Black Heart Bart

VALUE: Race Four Number 2 Hi World


Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):

Leg One: 1

Leg Two: 3, 4, 8, 9, 10

Leg Three: 1, 2, 3, 4, 12, 15

Leg Four: 3, 4, 11, 12, 13

$50 Investment= 33.33% of the dividend if successful


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