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A strong eight race meeting is set down for Ascot Saturday. The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is out six metres for the entire circuit.




Race One (13:57) : City Of Opportunity Handicap 1200m:

Back Me: Looks a good race for 5 Top Of The Class (Bet Now: $1.70). Talented three year old for the Lane camp that resumed at this track/distance a fortnight and despite doing plenty wrong, she was far too good for them. Can only see improvement off that and off that fresh effort, she should just about take care of these.
Big Danger: 1 Sweet Ora (Bet Now: $6.50) is the watch horse. Very smart filly for the Durrant/Miller yard who hasn’t really set the world on fire this time in, but she has had excuses. 1200m first time is a query, but she leads for fun I think and does get the claim for Johnston-Porter. On her best form, she’ll take some beating here.
Long Shot: 2 The Celt (Bet Now: $13.00) resumed behind Top Of The Class in that race mentioned above a fortnight ago and I think just forget he went around. He was tardy away and had to do a bit of work to get near the speed, which left him gassed late. Blinkers come off now, which is a good thing to my eye, and we know he has class/quality.



Race Two (14:37) : City Of Belmont Handicap (1MW) 1400m:

Back Me: Not the strongest race going around but 2 Detango (Bet Now: $1.45) does look the one. Ran over 1200m here a fortnight back and looked a little unlucky not to finish closer/win, getting squeezed out of room late when building momentum. Up to 1400m suits and gets Pike steering. safe way to go.
Big Danger: 1 Awesome As (Bet Now: $9.00) has been given a 38 day freshen up since racing over the mile here at the midweeks where she had the 1/1 sit and tried hard but was no match for Touch Of Silver, who has won again since. Would prefer her over slightly further, but she does have some really good 1400m stats.
Long Shot: 5 Secret Doubt (Bet Now: $4.80) ran over 1500m here at the midweeks a tick over a fortnight back and she loomed large to win the race after receiving the nice run but she just couldn’t quite finish it off. Back to 1400m suits, she maps well and stable is in really good at the moment. Knockout chance.



Race Three (15:17) : James Boags Premium Handicap (72+) 1400m:

Back Me: 4 Astronomite (Bet Now: $3.20) is the one with most upside/potential so I’ll go his way. Very good galloper for Team Williams who was a bit hit and miss early on last prep but really put it all together towards the end. Really liked his recent trial behind the Stakes performed Madassa, he flies fresh and Pike steers.
Big Danger: 3 Majinika (Bet Now: $3.00) loomed to win the race last start at this track/distance after receiving the box seat run and though he looked the winner he perhaps got worried out of it near the line by Key To Fame. Looks to map really well from the gate. Think he leads and takes some beating.
Long Shot: 2 Military Ruler (Bet Now: $11.00) is a quality galloper that resumes in that race won by Key To Fame and just looked in need of the run when finishing down the track. He has a lethal second up record, including Stakes form when produced second up. Not sure he can win, but a must for exotics.



Race Four (15:57) : D’Orsogna Italian Raceday May 20 Handicap (1MW) 2200m:

Back Me: 1 Cappo D’Oro (Bet Now: $2.20) looks the way to go here. Fred Kersley trained galloper who is in ripping form at the moment. Ran over this track/distance a fortnight back where he had a good run but just couldn’t quite pick up Couleur Bizarre, though the margin wasn’t great and he was coming. Pike is on now. That’s enough for me.
Big Danger: 4 Proxy (Bet Now: $5.00) comes through the same race mentioned above and his effort was very good in defeat. He got a mile back in the run but worked home with real purpose to run a close up fourth. Not quite as much depth here, he’s getting to peak fitness and hopefully he doesn’t have to be as far back here.
Long Shot: 7 Queen Of Tease (Bet Now: $26.00) is a very hot and cold mare that would give these a licking if she produced her best, but on her day she can stink it right up, as we saw in the same race mentioned above where she sat last and just stayed there. Hoping Autier can use the good draw and put her in a decent spot.



Race Five (16:42) : Penfolds Handicap (78+) 1800m:

Back Me: 7 Touch Of Silver (Bet Now: $2.25) looks a multi anchor here. Very talented four year old for the Durrant/Miller yard who ran over this track/distance four weeks back where he sat back in a slowly run race yet still came with a well timed run to get the job done impressively. Looks a more genuine tempo here and looks a standout.
Big Danger: 5 Ripper Rio (Bet Now: $3.20) was three weeks between runs when racing over 1400m here two weeks back and he just looked as if he was looking for further when winding up to run a close up fifth to Key To Fame. Up to 1800m is a big tick for this galloper and he has room for improvement.
Long Shot: 2 Corporate Larrikin (Bet Now: $15.00) was tried at odds a two weeks ago at the mile here where he ran along in front at a genuine speed and fought on very bravely but was nabbed in the final couple of strides by North Ridge. 1800m is a query, but he looks to lead for fun, and that is when he is at his best.



Race Six (17:15) : Belmont Community Trophy 1200m:

Back Me: 3 Epic Grey (Bet Now: $3.80) looks the best bet on the program and one of the best bets right across Australia for Saturday. Lindsey Smith trained youngster who debuts here off the back of a couple of trials. He did trial prior to Christmas but the stable pulled the pin for the prep. Two trials this prep have been outstanding and if he brings that here, he just wins.
Big Danger: 2 Monsoon (Bet Now: $7.00) is probably the pick of the raced brigade. Dan Morton trained youngster that ran at this track/distance last Wednesday where he fought on strongly but couldn’t quite reel in Akheron, who failed with excuses on Wednesday. Bit more depth here, and drawn awkwardly, but I think he can measure up.
Long Shot: 5 Trackta (Bet Now: $26.00) is a gelding on debut for the Kevin Anderson yard. He has been kept on ice from the stable but did trial a tick under two weeks back at Belmont where he looked to go about his business nicely in running third. Autier steers and draws a nice gate so perhaps one to include in exotics.



Race Seven (17:55) : Tabtouch Handicap (72+) 1000m:

Back Me: Hard race to sort out but I think 6 Detection (Bet Now: $34.00)represents value. He resumed at Geraldton a tick over three weeks back and looked pretty good to my eye. Closed off well but couldn’t quite get past Mister Panon. Good record second up and draws the pain with the claim for Johnston-Porter.
Big Danger: 3 Woolibar (Bet Now: $17.00) hasn’t raced for three weeks since racing over 1200m here where he had a nice run with cover off the pace and loomed large to win the race but he couldn’t finish it off behind Profit Street. I think we now know that 1200m is a bridge too far at this level, so back to 1000m is ideal and he’ll be strong late.
Long Shot: 9 The River (Bet Now: $4.60) is a talented three year old for the Andrews camp that resumed at this track/distance a fortnight back and he just took forever to get going but was god late in running third. The negative with him is that I think he is looking for 1200m, but he has the class/quality on his side.



Race Eight (18:30) : Creating Opportunities Handicap (1MW) 1400m:

Back Me: 14 Come On Board (Bet Now: $7.50) for me in the get out. He has been excellent in four runs back from a break but just can’t quite crack it for a win. Ran at the midweeks over 1500m here last time out where he tried hard but had to settle for a close second to the in form Bevel. Looks ready to win now and Autier takes over.
Big Danger: 1 Travellin’ (Bet Now: $7.50) looks the obvious threat here. Talented sprinter for Jim Taylor that has been very good in recent times. Ran over 1200m here a fortnight back where he had a charmed run and tried hard but the winner Star Glitter was too good. Not as much depth here, draws well and gets Randy Tan on board.
Long Shot: 11 Prying Tom (Bet Now: $31.00) is a talented galloper that resumes for Sharon Miller but that talent was no existent last time in, because he did bugger all in several runs. Showed really good promise the prep before so I am willing to give him a chance here. Not sure he can win, but include in exotics.



BEST BET: Race Six Number 3 Epic Grey

NEXT BEST: Race Five Number 7 Touch Of Silver

VALUE: Race Seven Number 6 Detection



Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):

Leg One: 7

Leg Two: 3

Leg Three: 3, 4, 6, 7, 9

Leg Four: 1, 2, 11, 13, 14, 15

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