Caulfield Guineas Day is arguably the best raceday at the Heath and probably runs second to Derby Day as the best overall afternoon of racing Melbourne has to offer. The feature race on the ten race card is the $1 Million BECK Caulfield Guineas (1600m). Rich Enuff holds clear sway in betting after the barrier draw, ahead of Looks Like The Cat and Almalad, both of which have drawn near the top pick in betting.
The first class racing doesn’t stop there, with three other Group l events, the $500,000 Schweppes Thousand Guineas (1600m), the $400,000 David Jones NBCF Toorak Handicap (1600m) and the $400,000 Cathay Pacific Caulfield Stakes (2000m).
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Race One (1:00pm) : Inglis Debutant Stakes 1000m: Form Guide
Back Me: Tricky juvenile race to sort out with plenty of decent trial performers. Schopenhaur (Best Odds: $7.50) is a beautifully bred by Savabeel who ran second in a barrier trial on Monday at Cranbourne and was very impressive when second to Stylish Assassin. James Winks placed the horse under no real pressure and gradually closed the margin on the winner, who was niggled at throughout in the straight. Good draw, stable is in form, hard to beat.
Big Danger: Stylish Assassin (Best Odds: $4.40) was the horse that beat the top tip home at Cranbourne, and while he was under a tad more pressure, he was still impressive himself, and he has shown that in the jumpouts back home, so we know he has the talent. The barrier is not ideal, but he did jump well in the trial, so perhaps he can ping the barriers.
Roughie: Of The Brave (Best Odds: $3.90) is a jump and run colt who showed good speed to lead all the way in his barrier trial win at Cranbourne on September 22, and the form has held up with the runner up, Lake Jackson, running a beauty last Saturday. Should kick up from the paint and hold the lead and prove a tough customer to gun down.
Race Two (1:35pm) : Thoroughbred Club Stakes 1200m: Form Guide
Back Me: Surely this is the race for Earthquake (Best Odds: $2.05). Many have been quick to sack her after two defeats this Spring, but there have been excuses. Wet track beat her fresh, then she was found out at 1400m behind First Seal and Winx. Also, she is not a leader, she prefers to come off the speed, so with good speed here, I can see McEvoy angling her one off and waiting to pounce on the turn. Good thing of the day IMO.
Big Danger: Tawteen (Best Odds: $6.00) was backed as if unbeatable in the Champagne Stakes (1200m) under the Moonee Valley lights a couple of weeks back, but found Eloping too nippy for her there and she tired late to run third. Has to take on Earthquake, and while I can’t see her beating the top tip, she does draw to get a soft run, and every chance to run 1200m.
Roughie: More Radiant (Best Odds: $5.00) was one of the fancied runners when resuming in the Cap D’Antibes (1100m) at Flemington a month back, but she just got too far back after a tardy beginning and was never really in the hunt when fourth to Afleet Esprit and Lumosty, both of which are genuine chances in the Thousand Guineas, so the form reads well, and she wasn’t far off Earthquake in the Autumn either.
Race Three (2:10pm) : Weekend Hussler Stakes 1400m: Form Guide
Back Me: Sistine Demon (Best Odds: $4.40) was too bad to be true in the Sir Rupert Clarke (1400m) where he led and punctured badly in the straight to run last. His run prior behind Chautaqua in the Bobbie Lewis (1200m) was very good, and given how good he was in the Autumn, I am prepared to give him another chance and put him on top here.
Big Danger: Turquoise King (Best Odds: $3.35) didn’t have a great deal of luck when racing here a couple of weeks back in the Testa Rossa Stakes (1200m) behind Target In Sight. He got held up between runners and really didn’t get a chance to go through the gears unlike the two that beat him home. 1400m is the query, but he is racing as if he’ll handle it.
Roughie: Hosting (Best Odds: $9.00) has promised so much during his career, but really hasn’t gone on with it. In saying that though, there were good signs first up when he savaged the line out wide to win at Sportingbet Park, albeit in much easier grade than this. Rises in class and weight, so he really isn’t well in when it comes to figures, but he has a very good second up record and finds a pretty good race here, so throw him in exotics.
Race Four (2:45pm) : Anco Seed & Turf Schillaci Stakes 1000m: Form Guide
Back Me: If Overreach (Best Odds: $3.80) comes to Caulfield with four legs, she wins. The 2013 Golden Slipper winner hasn’t been since running third to Guelph in the Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) last year, with injury and growth problems not allowing her to race. But she is back now, and appears back to her best given how brilliant she was in a recent barrier trial win at Randwick, spacing her rivals by six lengths under no pressure. Ran second to Villa Verde over this course/distance on debut in 2012, so coming to Caulfield doesn’t concern me. Just looks the winner in what is a hot race.
Big Danger: Not Listenin’tome (Best Odds: $4.00) makes his debut for Gary Moore after formerly being with Team Hawkes. The star gelding had two runs in the Autumn, winning first up here in the Zeditave Stakes (1200m) before contesting the Canterbury Stakes (1300m) where he was awesome behind star mare Appearance, beaten just over a length. Recent trial win was sharp and is loaded with talent.
Roughie: Sessions (Best Odds: $14.00) produced a couple of outstanding barrier trials prior to his first up run in The Shorts (1100m) at Randwick where he ran fourth to Terravista. The run was good, but given his barrier trials, I was expecting a bit more from him. I think coming back to Melbourne might assist that, as will a fast run 1000m.
Race Five (3:20pm) : Sportingbet Herbert Power Stakes 2400m: Form Guide
Back Me: Going to put Signoff (Best Odds: $5.50) on top in what looks to be one of the better runnings of the Herbert Power. He had no luck when resuming here, then was good behind the subsequent Group l placed Brambles at Flemington before going to the JRA Cup (2040m) and not being suited by the on pace bias when ninth to The Cleaner, beaten just over 2.5L. The last time he was at this sort of distance range, he put together two five length romps with weight, so this is D-Day to see where he is at.
Big Danger: Sangster (Best Odds: $8.50) didn’t really surprise me with his closing second in the JRA Cup. Sure, he pinched all the runs near the inside, but he did take the gaps and really savaged the line late to run a head second. He ran third to Fiveandahalfstar and Silent Achiever when he last raced over 2400m in the BMW last year, so that form does read very well, and he is getting back to his best, which is good enough to win this.
Roughie: Lord Van Percy (Best Odds: $9.50) is the interesting international runner here. He ran second to Mutual Regard in the Ebor, carrying 58kg, and now drops to 54.5kg here. His form prior to that was okay without being spectacular, but as we know with these overseas, they don’t need to be a superstar to win a good race in Australia, so he is the watch horse. I am not sold on Protectionist just yet. Sure, her record is well, but her form is very suspect compared to the big boom around her.
Race Six (3:55pm) : Cathay Pacific Caulfield Stakes 2000m: Form Guide
Back Me: Possibly one of the best editions of this race we have seen in quite a while. I am going to tip Happy Trails (Best Odds: $7.50) to bounce back. Completely forget he went around last Saturday in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m). A combination of bad luck and a negative ride from Michael Rodd gave the horse virtually no chance hence why Oliver is on board now. He races well at Caulfield, and there was good smart money for him on the weekend, so where there is smoke there is fire, and I am happy to give him another chance.
Big Danger: Sacred Falls (Best Odds: $4.40) is the horse to beat in the Cox Plate for mine based on how well he has come back this Spring and how dominant he was in his George Main Stakes (1600m) triumph, camping behind the speed before letting down powerfully in the straight and winning with ease on the line. Last time he ran at 2000m he was beaten less than a length by It’s A Dundeel. Expecting a bottler from him here.
Roughie: Dear Demi (Best Odds: $11.00) is an absolute ripping mare and she proved in her Stocks Stakes (1600m) triumph at the Valley a couple of weeks back that she is going to take some beating in the Caulfield Cup. She ran fourth in the race last year to Fawkner, but is clearly going much better 12 months on. This should top her off beautifully for next week, but given how well she is going, don’t be surprised if she salutes. If you like her for the Caulfield Cup, back her now because if she wins here, she’ll go close to the top of the betting for the race.
Race Seven (4:30pm) : David Jones Toorak Handicap 1600m: Form Guide
Back Me: Arabain Gold (Best Odds: $6.50) on top for me. Star mare who really wasn’t expected to beat Catkins first up in the Golden Pendant (1400m), but not only did she beat her, she showed an amazing turn of foot when presented. She won the Ethereal Stakes (2000m) here last year, so she is a winner at Caulfield, only 1kg over the minimum and has that acceleration which not many of these have, so she is the horse to beat IMO.
Big Danger: Bull Point (Best Odds: $7.00) was a touch unlucky in The Sir Rupert Clarke (1400m) when third to Trust In A Gust and Dissident given he drew wide and was out there for a majority of the race, so for him to keep attacking the line at the end tells me there is a good race in him for sure, and this could be it given he draws beautifully, Pumper sticks and gets a good weight pull on Trust In A Gust, who I think is the lay of the day.
Roughie: Doubt he will win, but one to put in wider exotics is Desert Jeuney (Best Odds: $67.00). He has raced with little luck this prep, most notably last time out at the Valley where he was one of the runs of the night when third to Another Prelate given he was near last in the run and was carted very wide on the turn, and on the night it was very hard to make up ground out wide from the back. He will do no work from the paint and could sneak a first four spot at big odds.
Race Eight (5:05pm) : Schweppes Thousand Guineas 1600m: Form Guide
Back Me: I am very keen on the Adelaide filly Go Indy Go (Best Odds: $5.00). She was too bad to be true in the Danehill Stakes (1200m) when tailed off behind Rich Enuff, then she showed why she is one of the best younger females in the business with a cracking third to Afleet Esprit in the Prelude, making up a stack of ground late. She will love the rise to 1600m, lone Group l winner in the field and meets them at set weights. Extremely hard to beat for mine.
Big Danger: Phil Sly paid the late entry fee for Lumosty (Best Odds: $4.00) to run here and why wouldn’t he after his filly absolutely brained them last week at Sale. The phrase “Going for an easy kill” is used alot, but this was the textbook version. She won by nine lengths, ran good time and was eased up the final 100m. She has looked a Thousand Guineas horse since her debut in the Autumn and she is here. Massive threat.
Roughie: Amicus (Best Odds: $11.00) has been ridden forward in her two Melbourne runs this time in and while she has been good, she has failed to attack the line with purpose like we know she can. From barrier nine, I’d like to see Bowman snag her back from the start, possibly get on the back of the top tip and be saved for the straight, because we know she has a brilliant finish on her when saved.
Race Nine (5:40pm) : BECK Caulfield Guineas 1600m: Form Guide
Back Me: Sticking loyal with Almalad (Best Odds: $7.50). He was given a beaut steer by Tommy Berry to win the Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) at the Valley a couple of weeks back, although the form out of that race does look suspect given how farcical the speed was. In saying that, this horse still has a stack of upside I feel as he heads towards a possible Cox Plate, but in order to get a spot in the field, he does need to win this. Barrier 13 doesn’t look as bad as I think most are making out to be. Rich Enuff is in barrier ten, and in between the two horses are Chivalry and Stingray, both of which like to go back, so I think Tommy can punch forward and sit outside Rich Enuff, and we will find out then who is the best three year old in Australia.
Big Danger: The win of Rich Enuff (Best Odds: $2.50) in the Prelude here was simply out of this world. No horse can do what he did unless they are very special. What made the win even better was the fact he was forced to do work from the wide barrier, and then faced a strong headwind outside the leader. He won similar to that of Whobegotyou when he was on his way to Guineas glory. He is the horse to beat for sure on form, but $2.70 is a tad short. Wait until raceday.
Roughie: Kumaon (Best Odds: $21.00) was excellent in the Stutt behind Almalad given he was near last in the run, and on the night, it was very hard to make up ground, especially in that race given they absolutely walked in front. A bigger track now, more fair racing surface, fitter and has drawn beautifully to get a suck run behind a genuine tempo. Knockout chance at odds.
Race Ten (6:15pm) : Sportingbet Sprint Series Final 1200m: Form Guide
Back Me: Looks a two horse race between Girl Guide (Best Odds: $3.70) and Shamal Wind. Under the weights scale, I will stick with Girl Guide, who was fantastic in a heat of this series last time out at this track/distance, sitting three wide with no cover on the speed yet surging late and getting up to win. Form from that race does look very good, should get a gun trip outside likely leader Brilliant Bisc, and given she is only 2kg over the minimum, she looks beautifully placed.
Big Danger: Shamal Wind (Best Odds: $2.50) finished third to Girl Guide in that heat here, where she was booming late between runners. Went to the trials on Monday and looked very good there when fourth to Bel Sprinter, so she has been kept up to the mark for this. If there is a speed battle on in front, this is the mare you want to be on, because she can really unleash a sectional when ridden to suit.
Roughie: Gig (Best Odds: $15.00) has been up longer than Ron Jeremy, but she is consistently racing well at a high level. She wasn’t far off them in the Sir Rupert Clarke in a race dominated by those on the speed and was only five lengths away. Comes back to the mares now, back to 1200m, and she does get in well at the weights, so she is a definite value chance.
BEST BET: Race Four Number 4 Overreach
NEXT BEST: Race Two Number 1 Earthquake
VALUE: Race Six Number 4 Happy Trails
Quaddie Tips (Races Seven Through To Ten):
Leg One: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 14
Leg Two: 2, 3, 5, 6
Leg Three: 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9
Leg Four: 1, 2
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All odds are subject to change. Odds listed are correct at the time of the latest update.
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