The Championships wraps up at Randwick this Saturday but really, it’s all about Winx and her farewell to racing in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m). The weather is fine, the track is soft (5) and the rail is out three metres for the entire circuit.
Winx Ⓜ️: Read the latest on Winx
Race 1. (11:25) King Of Sydney Sport Mile 1600m
I think 3 Autocratic (Bet Now: $8.50 TOP ODDS) can get the win here and earn a spot in the Champagne. He’s been really good in two runs from a spell and I dare say hasn’t been suited by the wet tracks. Last run came two weeks ago at Rosehill when not suited by the early bias but still found the line well to run fourth. Up to the Randwick mile on a drying track, with the right form, he’ll do me.
2 Vinco (Bet Now: $6.50 TOP ODDS) is a Tony McEvoy trained colt that comes here in winning form having just got the job done in the Mornington Sires Produce last time. I think the field he beat had some depth to it, but the win, IMO, was largely due to the ride from Vorster more than the horse. Still, 1600m should be fine for him and he’s already a two time winner, which has to be respected.
8 Significance (Bet Now: $7.50 TOP ODDS) is a son of Frankel for John O’Shea who made his debut in what looked a strong 2YO maiden at Newcastle and I thought he was pretty good in defeat behind a smart one in Bullet Fly. Looked sharp in a trial win last week and on breeding, the rise to 1600m should be perfect, and this isn’t the strongest race going around, so a win wouldn’t totally shock.
Race 2. (12:05) South Pacific Classic 1400m
I’m confident that 12 Millard Reaction (Bet Now: $6.50 TOP ODDS) can measure up. Toby Edmonds trains this gelding, who is 2/2 to start his career. Ran best late splits of the day when bolting up on debut at Doomben, beating a subsequent impressive maiden winner. He then went straight to a 3YO Handicap where he looked in a hopeless spot on the turn but picked up and savaged the line to win. Soft gate, down in the weights, think he’ll run well.
I think back on a firmer track, you’ll see a much better version of 1 Gem Song (Bet Now: $18.00 TOP ODDS). Class got him the win first up in the Eskimo Prince before having injury troubles, which saw him miss the Hobartville/Randwick Guineas. Freshened up and went to the Darby Munro where he was run off his legs. Dry track, up to 1400m, fitter and has class. He’ll take some beating.
7 Napoleon Solo (Bet Now: $26.00 TOP ODDS) is the big watch here from a Queensland Derby perspective. Quality animal for Team Snowden who kicks off his prep here. He looked a big dope in the Spring but there was no denying the talent was there and the upside he’d have with a spell. He’s back and the trials leading in have been very good to the eye. Whatever he does here, he will improve on, but he looks a beauty.
Race 3. (12:40) Provincial Championships Final 1400m
I think the horse at stupid odds here that can run a big race is the Kris Lees trained 7 Chalmers (Bet Now: $34.00 TOP ODDS). He comes through the Gosford Qualifier @ Newcastle and he should have absolutely bolted in. Just had no luck at all in the straight under a very negative ride from RT and with clear air, he comfortably wins. He’ll lap up a fast 1400m, good second up record and is proven in town.
2 Archedemus (Bet Now: $4.60 TOP ODDS) is a deserving fav for an in form Gwenda Markwell stable. Couple of solid wins in town prior to being a short priced elect in the Newcastle Qualifier where he had to chase a decent speed but he got there and was good to the line and through it. Looked pretty good in a trial last week. Just a little query on a hard 1400m on a potentially drying surface.
1 Turnberry (Bet Now: $18.00 TOP ODDS) is a proven city performer and off the back of his tough Qualifying win at Wyong, I think he has to be respected here. He did all the work near the speed at Wyong, somewhat ridden ugly, which does suit him, and he found plenty late under Sam Clenton to win. Hard 1400m no issue for him, looks to have upside and generally, the Wyong Qualifier measures up well in this race.
Race 4. (13:15) Percy Sykes Stakes 1200m
I do like the look of the Team Snowden trained 5 Cheer Leader (Bet Now: $3.60 TOP ODDS). She’s had three career runs in Melbourne and has been quite good each time she has stepped out. Winkers went on last time at the Valley and she bolted in under Lane, and the time compared well with the William Reid, won by Sunlight. Tinkering with the head gear looked to work and looks a leading contender here.
Slipper form was good in the Kindergarten and Sires last week, so have to respect that here with 2 Anaheed (Bet Now: $11.00 TOP ODDS). She was well specked in the Slipper and tried hard but 1200m at that level probably just saw her out behind Kiamichi. Two time winner at Randwick and back to her own age/sex, she does look hard to beat. Just depends what upside is left.
There was a whisper or two after the Breeders at Flemington that 4 Flit (Bet Now: $9.50 TOP ODDS) is right up there with the best juveniles that James Cummings has got in his stable, and considering how dominant the stable has been this season, that’s a pretty decent wrap. She showed a lovely turn of foot in the race and probably hit the front a tad early, eventually having to share the spoils with Ready Set Sail. Hard to beat for sure.
Race 5. (13:50) Arrowfield Sprint 1200m
Huge fan of the Team Hawkes colt 10 Trope (Bet Now: $6.00) and I think he can easily measure up here. Outstanding debut win on the Kensington track before going to the Fireball where he did an amazing job to get as close as he did to Prophet’s Thumb in record time. Dodged the Darby Munro to be aimed at this and the trial last week was very good to the eye at Newcastle.
Enormous respect to the high class filly that is 11 Avantage (Bet Now: $5.00). Paraded with somewhat of an attitude first up in the Darby Munro but class came to the fore late and she was too good for them, albeit gifted some soft mid race splits. Another that’s been specifically targeted at this race, she’s in the right stable and her overall record/form is just first class for a NZ galloper.
8 Baller (Bet Now: $11.00) looks one at real overs IMO. Outside Nature Strip, he was the lone survivor of those on speed in the Galaxy and I thought he did an excellent job in defeat when running fifth, beaten just over a length. The two runs prior were excellent now back to his own age, he does appeal. Hopefully can get over from the wide gate without doing too much work.
Race 6. (14:25) ATC Oaks 2400m
I think nobody can deny that 1 Verry Elleegant (Bet Now: $1.70) is the best horse in this race, and by some distance. Do I want to take $2/thereabouts, even shorter? No. She’s still yet to tick the Oaks trip box, albeit in the Vinery, she was the best she’s ever been in terms of racing manners and relaxing in the run. She’s got the brilliance to beat these…does she have the staying prowess?
I think if you’re looking for a bet, I’d say it’s definitely 2 Aristia (Bet Now: $6.50) each way. She has really struggled on the bog tracks in both the Phar Larp and Vinery behind Verry Elleegant but has stuck to the task quite gamely each time. There were reports that the stable was disappointed she didn’t win the Vinery given how well she was going leading in, so that does fill you with confidence if you’re a fan, which I am. Hopefully a firmer track, she lands on speed and will be hard to beat.
7 Scarlet Dream (Bet Now: $21.00) is a Mark Newnham trained filly who is going okay leading into this. Good from the back two runs back in the Kembla Grange Classic behind Pohutukawa before going to the Vinery where she got a mile out of her ground and was never in the hunt behind Verry Elleegant but did make ground late. Gets gate one, firmer track…can be a definite improver.
Race 7. (15:05) Queen Elizabeth Stakes 2000m
I think the late great Les Carlyon summed up greatness perfectly “Sport is a passion and out of passion comes love. No point trying to work out why some become heroes and others don’t. The chosen ones just go into the pantheon and refuse to fade.” This is more than likely the farewell of the great mare 7 Winx (Bet Now: $1.06) yet despite that, her popularity is soaring, and in the modern times, I can only recall Makybe Diva as an example where a nation stops for a horse. Won’t be just a nation this Saturday. It will be the racing world. Just stand and applaud.
4 He’s Eminent (Bet Now: $23.00) looks primed to run a beauty and pretty confident he’ll finish either second or third. His Ranvet run was unbelievable the way he went in front, first up as well, on that testing track, and it took a hard fit, high class animal in Avilius to beat him. All concerned will hope for a drying surface because he is most effective on firmer footing, which he should get.
1 Happy Clapper (Bet Now: $23.00) can certainly bounce back to positive form. His papers are stamped to never go to Melbourne again I’d say after the All Star Mile because he just didn’t fire at all after a brilliant yet tough effort behind Winx in the Chipping Norton. Has been freshened after Flemington and I thought he looked outstanding in a tick over trial. Can only run well I’d say.
Race 8. (15:50) Sydney Cup 3200m
11 Midterm (Bet Now: $8.50) each way for me. Yes, the ride largely helped him win the Manion Cup last time but still, I thought it was dominant. Jamie Kah controlled things beautifully outside the speed before putting the leader away and timing her run to absolute perfection on the Team Williams galloper, putting them away impressively. That form has been ticked, with Big Duke running well in the Tancred and Shraaoh running second in the Chairmans. 51.5kg, he’ll be on speed and proving hard to beat.
The horse on everybody’s mind is 10 Dubhe (Bet Now: $3.50) given the Charlie Appleby factor, and rightfully so given how well the stable has done in past trips down under. This son of Dubawi was a very sharp winner over two miles at Meydan, but have to bear in mind they absolutely walked in front, and the subsequent form out of the race has seen five runs for no wins, with the runner up beaten comfortably by Cross Counter. I’m respecting the fact he’s in the best stable in the world, but betting wise, he’s well and truly too short.
A drying track will really suit the Roger James trained mare 15 Rondinella (Bet Now: $10.00). She ran in the Tancred where she didn’t appear 100% happy on the bog track but stuck to her guns really well in a courageous effort when third to Avilius. She’s crying out for a dry track and she’ll likely get that this time around, plus draws gate and right down in the weights. Certainly appeals as a knockout chance.
Race 9. (16:30) Coolmore Legacy Stakes 1600m
Ripping edition of a time honoured race. 4 Dixie Blossoms (Bet Now: $11.00) just has to handle the seven day back up to go close to winning. I thought she was the run of the race in the Doncaster behind Brutal. Just had no hope of winning the way the race was run so for her to get as close as she did, she was outstanding. Didn’t handle the back up successfully in the Spring, but that was on a bottomless track. Off last week, clearly hard to beat.
I think a bit of cushion in the track will really suit the Hayes/Dabernig filly 16 Amphitrite (Bet Now: $10.00). Sharp winner of the Vanity first up before a strong third in the Guineas behind Mystic Journey. Then contested the All Star Mile where she was a solid enough sixth behind the Tassie filly, but well held all the same. Comes here with fresh legs, she is dynamite when produced on the fresh side, and I think that bit of cushion, getting away from the rock hard tracks, will suit her.
The mare that’s silly odds is clearly 6 Oregon’s Day (Bet Now: $20.00). I think Mick Price has her flying. Sharp first up winner at Flemington before going to the Coolmore where she looked to be bolting but when the pressure was applied, the wheels started spinning. Been kept on ice for this and with a drying track, plus gate one and Olly back on, she looks a solid each way bet.
Race 10. (17:10) Sapphire Stakes 1200m
1 Invincibella (Bet Now: $10.00) is a high class mare for Chris Waller who is no doubt on the path towards the Brisbane Winter. She had a very good Spring/Summer, highlighted by a strong win in the Mares race on Magic Millions Day at the Gold Coast. Given a quiet trial last week at Warwick Farm but absolutely loved the way she ran to the line and through it. She’ll be strong here…just depends if she has the speed in the legs.
5 Spright (Bet Now: $4.00) is just absolutely bursting to win a race…not sure it’s here. Likely to be the Sangster at Morphettville but she’s flying. Can make a very good case that she should have won the William Reid at the Valley but due to her racing pattern, she had no luck at all and with clear air at the right time, I think she beats Sunlight. Just a potential sticky track here is the negative.
13 Zumbelina (Bet Now: $34.00) is in a similar boat to Invincibella re Brisbane Winter. She’s a very good mare in her own right who is just a little margin off being a top class mare but her time could well come this prep. Trial wasn’t as impressive as Invincibella but it was still pretty good. Likely gives them a start but if they go silly in front, she’ll be one charging at them late.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Six Number 1 Verry Ellegant
NEXT BEST: Race Five Number 10 Trope
LONG SHOT: Race Ten Number 1 Invincibella
Quaddie Tips (Races Seven Through To Ten):
Leg One: 7
Leg Two: 8, 10, 11, 15
Leg Three: 2, 3, 4, 6, 16
Leg Four: 1, 3, 5, 13
$50 Investment = 62.50% 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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