A nine race card has been assembled for Flemington this Saturday for Chester Manifold Stakes Day. The weather forecast is for showers, the track is good (4) and the rail is out six metres for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (12:30) Meadow Mist Plate 1000m
Giving 1 Fake (Bet Now: $4.80) another look, but with not much confidence. He ran in a Sandown 2YO race a fortnight back and finished down the track behind Graceful Storm. Was held up most of the way and wasn’t really extended so the run was inconclusive. Trained on the track, so I’m sure he’s had experience down the straight, and form prior was good.
2 Al Dorama (Bet Now: $4.00) is a Robert Smerdon trained son of Al Maher who comes through the Graceful Storm race at Sandown. This bloke settled near the speed most of the way and looked to travel well under Maloney but just couldn’t hold out the finishing burst of the eventual winner. Should only improve off that and now he has the run under the belt, he will be strong late.
5 Blue Hope (Bet Now: $10.00) is a Statue Of Liberty colt on debut for the John McArdle team. This bloke has had a couple of jump outs, the latest being last week at Balnarring when winning that under Jamie Mott and doing it pretty well to the eye in okay time. Looks to have plenty of scope so for mine he is a market/yard watch.
Race 2. (13:08) Piping Lane Handicap 2000m
4 Golden Mane (Bet Now: $4.20) on top in what looks a pretty thin contest. Hayes/Dabernig trains this galloper, who scored a strong win at this track/distance on New Years Day, with some help from an absolute peach from Jamie Kah. He is a horse that once he finds form, he generally holds it, and with only 51kg on his back, he’ll take some beating.
5 Pretty Punk (Bet Now: $4.60) is a Macdonald/Gluyas trained stayer from SA who finds a very winnable race here. Was heavily backed when racing over this trip at Morphettville a fortnight back and the plonk was landed with a commanding performance. Craig Williams steers, down in the weights, hard fit, in form…ticks the boxes.
6 Bondeiger…(Bet Now: $7.00) you would have to think that this is his last chance in the Weir stable. Bendigo run behind Burrum’s Buzz was a beauty before racing at Caulfield on Sunday where he got back to last in a race, on a day for that matter, where making up significant ground from the back was hard to do. Last chance.
Race 3. (13:43) Seascay Handicap 1700m
2 Sayed (Bet Now: $5.00) for me. Chris Waller trains this stayer, who resumes after what was a pretty solid Winter/Spring prep, which ended with a gutsy fourth in the Newcastle Cup behind Broadside. His prep this time in has been in Sydney where he has trialled well a couple of times. Resumes here at 1700m, telling me he is forward enough, and he does sprint well fresh.
1 Master Of Arts (Bet Now: $6.00) a definite threat. Darren Weir trains this galloper, who was an alarming drifter in betting when resuming in the Lord Stakes on Boxing Day at Caulfield, but despite the market drift, I thought he ran really well against the pattern of the race/day behind Payroll. Likes racing at Flemington, has the run under the belt and is the class factor.
5 The Chairman (Bet Now: $5.00) is a Mick Price trained stayer who had no market support at all when resuming over 1400m at Sandown a fortnight back and while the market got it right, he wasn’t too bad in defeat at all behind Ozi Choice. Has a really good second up record and did win his lone start at this track. Knockout chance for sure.
Race 4. (14:18) Craftsman Handicap (70) 1400m
Pretty keen here on 4 Tagreeda (Bet Now: $6.50). Promising filly for the Mick Price team who resumed with an encouraging second to Missile Boom at Cranbourne before racing at Sandown last Wednesday where I thought Olly gave the filly an absolute peach and once she got clear air, gee she sprinted and won with authority. Flemington 1400m looks perfect.
1 Twitchy Frank (Bet Now: $5.00) is a daughter of Choisir for the Darren Weir team who won her opening two career outings, including a victory under the lights at the Valley. She last raced a fortnight back over the 1300m at Sandown where she tried hard but had to settle for a narrow second to Light Romance. Gives the impression that 1400m suits.
5 Bellegano (Bet Now: $13.00) is a Robert Smerdon trained filly who should love the Flemington 1400m. She comes through the Light Romance race at Sandown two weeks ago where she sat off the pace and while she lacked the turn of foot to go with them, she was more than sound late when fourth. Looks a miler+, so the step up in trip on the big track should see her run a beauty.
Race 5. (14:53) Rain Lover Handicap (70) 1400m
5 Crystal Spirit (Bet Now: $3.40) for me. Ellerton/Zahra trains this gelding, who resumed with a narrow maiden win on the Pakenham Synthetic before running a close up fourth in the Gold Carat at the Valley. He then ran last Saturday at Caulfield and really attacked the line late to just miss out on picking up Sheriff John Stone. Maps super, up to 1400m a big tick, claim, give in the track no concern…keen.
3 Muraahib (Bet Now: $4.20) was the subject of one of the more alarming drifts in recent memory when resuming in the Gold Carat at the Valley. He went from $2.50 to as much as $6-$7 and ran accordingly, though he didn’t have much luck behind Bel Sonic. Big track, 1400m, run under the belt, I’m expecting much better.
4 Eluded (Bet Now: $11.00) is an Ellerton/Zahra trained gelding racing really well at the moment. Scored a narrow but sharp win two back to break the maiden at Werribee before taking on the older horses at Cranbourne where he led all the way under a lovely ride on speed from Andrew Mallyon. Don’t think the trip will be an issue and is trained on the track.
Race 6. (15:28) Arbroath Handicap (70) 1100m
Siding with 3 I’m Telling Ya (Bet Now: $6.50). Amy Johnston trains this talented sprinter, who appears to save his best for the Flemington straight. Ran in the Standish on New Years Day where he sat back in a slowly run affair and couldn’t come on as expected behind Lord of the Sky. Clearly less depth and draws to get clear running and launch.
11 Believing (Bet Now: $9.00) is a Robbie Griffiths trained son of Bel Esprit who had a bit of market support at odds when racing over the 1000m at Sandown a fortnight back and he worked home well late behind El Sicario. Given his racing pattern, I think the straight will suit him, and he gets really good weight relief after the claim.
10 Aurelius Hero (Bet Now: $27.00) had just been going through the motions a touch for the Dan O’Sullivan team but he got a much needed confidence boost last time out at Terang, with some help from a ripping steer from Jack Hill, who had the horse parked off the pace before getting the inside split and showing an electric turn of foot. Now his confidence is up, he can go on with it.
Race 7. (16:08) Chester Manifold Stakes 1400m
9 Pure Pride (Bet Now: $8.50) on top in what looks a pretty solid edition of the Chester Manifold. Given she has this awful racing pattern of flopping out the back and running on, she’ll receive more bad luck than good luck, but when luck is on her side, like it was four back at this track/distance, she is explosive. Goes well fresh and loves Flemington.
3 Dollar For Dollar (Bet Now: $3.10) is an absolute beauty for the Tony McEvoy team. Hasn’t raced since the Sandown Stakes (1500m) on Zipping Classic Day where he sat outside Hellova Street most of the way and eventually wore it down for a sharp win to continue the picket fence. Fresh at 1400m looks ideal and he is tough.
11 Nikitas (Bet Now: $12.00) is a Darren Weir trained four year old who got a well needed confidence boost two back on the Parks track before racing at this track/distance on New Years Day and he ran okay behind Wise Hero but didn’t set the world on fire. Gets really good weight relief here and there should be a more genuine tempo in front.
Race 8. (16:48) Better Beyond Plate 1100m
7 Ken’s Dream (Bet Now: $4.00) is a talented four year old for Darren Weir who resumed in the Murphy’s Reward race at Moonee Valley three weeks back where he did a power of work from the wide gate but despite that he wasn’t beaten that far, finishing 1.4L away in fifth position. Has run well down the straight before, right down in the weights and has a fab second up record.
4 Benz (Bet Now: $5.00) is a quality galloper from Adelaide that resumes here for Gordon Richards. Only had the one run last prep at Morphettville when a close up fourth to Lope De Capio in a Stakes race. Resumes here with no trials, but the horse has won first up in Melbourne previously, and this, overall, isn’t a strong contest.
They have the potential to go nuts on speed here, so for value, I’d definitely include 8 Mr Individual (Bet Now: $17.00). Resumes for the Corstens team after a solid enough Autumn/Winter prep, and while he didn’t win, he was close up behind some pretty good gallopers. Sprints well fresh and I haven’t minded what I’ve seen in recent jump outs.
Race 9. (17:33) Tauto Handicap (84) 1400m
12 Sharing (Bet Now: $10.00) is a mare that is low flying I think and looks well placed here. She ran over this track/distance on New Years Day where she got a mile back in the run but finished off with real purpose late behind Soho Ruby. Like most from that race running here, she gets really good weight relief and should be near peak fitness third up.
6 Soho Ruby (Bet Now: $4.50) has that hard fitness under the belt and that was a big reason why she got the win here on New Years Day. Steve Baster had her parked off the pace and popped into clear air at the right time, finishing best with the big weight. Another that gets down in the weights and she really does like racing at this track/distance.
13 Diapason (Bet Now: $13.00) is a Chris Waller trained mare who comes to Melbourne after a couple of runs in Sydney to kick off the prep. She ran over 1400m last time out at Warwick Farm where she never really looked likely but closed off okay late behind stalemate Noire. That form has been franked with runner Pecans winning the Belle Of The Turf at Gosford. Should run quite well.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Five Number 5 Crystal Spirit
NEXT BEST: Race Two Number 4 Golden Mane
VALUE: Race Nine Number 12 Sharing
Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):
Leg One: 3, 5, 10, 11, 12
Leg Two: 3, 6, 7, 9, 11
Leg Three: 2, 4, 7, 8
Leg Four: 6, 7, 12, 13
$50 Investment= 12.50% of the dividend if successful
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