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Group l racing at Flemington returns this Saturday with a crack bunch of sprinters set to take their place in the Lightning Stakes (1000m). The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.

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Race 1. (12:35) DeRucci Trophy (84) 1600m

Back Me

She’s yet to win this prep but I think 10 Abyssinian (Bet Now: $11.00) is flying and she gets her chance for a win. Comes through the Naantali race from two weeks ago where i thought her effort was quite good from the back given the leaders really stacked up midrace and those from behind were going to struggle. She didn’t do a bad job in defeat I thought and up to the Flemington mile, with a more genuine tempo, I think she can get the job done.


9 Mountain Break (Bet Now: $4.40) is a former UK mare that made her Australian debut for the Chris Waller team under the Moonee Valley lights and I thought she was good in defeat behind an impressive winner in Island Daze. No real turn of foot and probably wasn’t 100% happy around the tight track but battled on well. Better suited on the bigger track for mine and Olly sticks.

Long Shot

I think 4 Hussy’s Glow (Bet Now: $26.00) is ticking over nicely for the Patrick Payne stable. She ran over 1400m on the Parks track three weeks ago and she really just had no hope of the way the race was run but did close off alright very late behind Over And Above. Flemington mile and back to mares grade looks suitable for her. Hasn’t won in Melbourne for a while the negative.

Race 2. (13:10) Lawn Handicap (84) 2000m

Back Me

3 Schabau, (Bet Now: $1.95) with natural upside, does look the one to beat. Made his Australian debut for Rob Hickmott on New Years Day at Flemington where he was smashed in betting and ran up to those market expectations with a tough win after doing work in the run. Race has produced three winners, so the form reads well. Remains here, fresh, and just looks to have upside.


1 Hang Man (Bet Now: $4.40) is a very good horse for the Michael Moroney stable who scored a fab win first up over an unsuitable trip at Caulfield before going to Sandown where he looked a good thing on paper but unfortunately he sat back in a very slowly run race and just couldn’t produce the dash required when second to All Too Huiyung. 2000m on his home track, clearly appeals.

Long Shot

I’ll be very interested to see how 5 Surprise Baby (Bet Now: $7.00) goes for Paul Preusker. He ran over the mile at the Valley last time and produced one of the wins of the night when wide no cover throughout yet cruised to the front on the turn and kicked hard in the straight to get the job done. On breeding, the 2000m is fine and the stable don’t bring them to town for nothing.

Race 3. (13:45) Singapore Turf Club Trophy (90) 1200m

Back Me

No reason to suggest why 9 Mystyko (Bet Now: $5.50) can’t continue his winning ways. Trevor Rogers has done an outstanding job with this bloke, winning his past three and each time he has had to work for it but kept finding under pressure to eventually draw clear late. Clearly this is his toughest assignment, but he draws to get clear air on speed, only has 51kg and Chelsea Hall is riding in fab form at the moment.


8 Intuition (Bet Now: $7.00) is an interesting one. James Cummings trains this sprinter who ran down the straight here four weeks ago where he ran well but I thought he had his chance when a close up fifth to Just Hifalutin, who ran a beauty last Saturday, so the form reads alright and this horse can certainly measure up if he’s anywhere near right. Interesting to see how he goes.

Long Shot

4 Princeton Spirit (Bet Now: $13.00) should just about be ready to show his best third up from a break. Looked to have every chance for mine last time in the Sale Quality but that track was very shifty that afternoon and I’m not sure he was 100% happy on it behind Fox Hall. Back on firmer footing, he races best when allowed to roll on speed, so hopefully that eventuates here.

Race 4. (14:20) Talindert Stakes 1000m

Back Me

7 Charvet (Bet Now: $11.00) is a Busuttin/Young trained filly resuming. She debuted in the Clockwise Classic at Ballarat where she tried hard but had no answers for the finale produced by Hawker Hurricane. Been given a break and trialled up well last Monday at Cranbourne to the eye. Form has been okay from that Ballarat race and the trial was pleasing I thought to the eye.


10 Talented (Bet Now: $12.00) is a Snitzel filly for Team Snowden who was relatively unwanted in betting when debuting in a 2YO maiden at Geelong where she settled midfield in the run before easing wider on the turn and finishing off with absolute purpose to score a most impressive debut win. Bit harder here, and overall the stable has been going terrible recently, but this girl could be a shining light.

Long Shot

16 Moneefa (Bet Now: $20.00) is a Mick Price trained filly having her first start. She trialled a couple of weeks back at Geelong and under no riding, she ambled to the front and looked pretty good in winning the trial narrowly but impressively. Debut down the straight is never an easy task, but draws to get clear air, cover and could well be a knockout chance at odds.

Race 5. (14:55) The Vanity 1400m

Back Me

9 Shamwow (Bet Now: $9.00) is a big watch here. Her first up maiden win at Sale was simply stunning. Trialled up enormous prior to that and she ran up to that at Sale, settling a clear last before presenting wide on the turn and she rounded them up like a really good horse and her late splits were some of the best of the entire day. Was down to run in an easier race on Wednesday but instead runs here.


1400m and Flemington looks an ideal recipe for the Hayes/Dabernig trained 4 Fundamentalist (Bet Now: $3.10). She resumed in the Manfred at Caulfield a fortnight ago where she was a little flat footed when the sprint went on, but the last 75-100m was very good, warming to the task late. Up to 1400m looks ideal for this filly and does have the run under the belt over the stablemate Amphitrite.

Long Shot

Great to see 1 Amphitrite (Bet Now: $3.30) back at the races. Formerly with Darren Weir, the Thousand Guineas winner is now with the Hayes/Dabernig stable and from all reports, she’s flying in readiness for her Autumn campaign. Really came of age in the Spring before having no luck in the Empire Rose before backing up in the Oaks where it was clearly the wrong move to back her up. Market will be the guide with her.

Race 6. (15:30) HKJC Trophy (90) 1600m

Back Me

I think 4 Guizot (Bet Now: $7.50) is ideally placed back to the Flemington mile. He ran over 1700m at Caulfield three weeks ago where I was on him to beat Silentz, but the tempo was just an absolute crawl and that played perfectly into the hands of the fav, who had the turn of foot and was too sharp. Tempo should be more genuine this time around and I think the 1600m will be good for him.


10 Antah (Bet Now: $4.50) is a very progressive gelding for Jason Warren who appreciated a decent tempo a fortnight ago at Caulfield when sitting back before Maskiell peeled him to the outside and despite wanting to lay in, he surged and put them away pretty quickly for a rather dominant win. This is his hardest test to date, but you just don’t know when and where the bar will stop rising with this horse.

Long Shot

The sleeper at odds could well be 13 Thunder Cloud (Bet Now: $11.00). He resumed in the Bad Wolf race over 1400m at Flemington and he was very unlucky not to finish closer. Was out the back and was just warming to the task when getting held up and that was his race done and dusted. 2000m+ is when you’ll see the best of him. Think he is one to include in exotics.

Race 7. (16:10) CS Hayes Stakes 1400m

Back Me

Was keen on Ringerdingding but with him out, the race is wide open and I think there is good value about the Michael Moroney trained 9 Chapada (Bet Now: $20.00). He hasn’t raced since the Victoria Derby and I think most would agree that with normal luck he wins the race. Just no luck at all when wanting to build momentum. 1400m is clearly short of his best, but he’s drawn to get clear air, he’s got class and Moroney did say the horse is forward enough first up. Just needs speed on and I’m hoping that’s the case.


2 Extra Brut (Bet Now: $9.00) is a Maher/Eustace trained three year old resuming. Formerly with Darren Weir but is now with a new stable and is on the Guineas path, potentially Australian Cup/All Star Mile as well. Looked to trial well at Cranbourne last week when back and closing off rather nicely. He’ll likely spot them a decent start and really catch the eye from a Guineas perspective.

Long Shot

15 Starouz (Bet Now: $17.00) is a son of Zoustar for Mick Price who was a somewhat lucky winner of his maiden at Benalla but he showed his talent with a very strong second at Caulfield over 1400m behind the above average Social Spin. That form wasn’t exactly franked last Saturday, but this bloke is on an upward spiral and he should just do no work from the draw.

Race 8. (16:50) Lightning Stakes 1000m

Back Me

I’m supremely confident that 8 Graff (Bet Now: $6.50) wins or goes close. In terms of sprinting three year olds, I think he’s clearly the best Australia has to offer. He was one of the best runs in The Everest, closing off well off a slow tempo on a bottomless track behind Redzel. From all reports, he went like a jet in private jumpout at Newcastle before trialling down the straight at Flemington and he looked to handle the course comfortably. I think he’s ready to rock and roll.


10 Sunlight (Bet Now: $4.00) probably holds the mantle as the best three year old sprinter in Australia as it stands now. Most unlucky in the Manikato before getting things to suit in the Coolmore and surged hard late to win. Been given a good break and her work/trials leading up to her return have been great to the eye and at WFA, she does appear rather well placed.

Long Shot

9 Lean Mean Machine (Bet Now: $8.50) looks wound up to seal his career post racing. Son of Zoustar first up for Chris Waller and a win here would seal a breeding career for sure. Looked to trial well on a couple of occasions in Sydney before trialling down the straight last Friday and he looked to move very well behind Graff and Booker. Really keen to see how he goes.

Race 9. (17:30) JRA Trophy 1400m

Back Me

12 Fox Hall (Bet Now: $4.50) did some good things for me first up in the Sale Quality so happy to be in his corner. Don’t think it was a strong field first up in the Sale Quality but there was a touch of arrogance about his win. He cut the corner and bolted to the front under Micky Dee and from the 250m onwards it was a painless watch. Is a second up winner and for mine will be better suited at 1400m.


5 Flow (Bet Now: $5.50) is a definite contender here. His effort in the Carrington behind Tom Melbourne was enormous. Ran sub 47 for the first 800m, but seemed to do it comfortably enough, but clearly spent petrol tickets and was left a sitting shot for Tommy to pounce. That was his first run in a month, so hopefully there’s room to improve and he can win here for sure.

Long Shot

1 Widgee Turf (Bet Now: $6.00) is an absolute beauty for the Patrick Payne stable that rarely runs a bad race. He is first up after a pretty good Winter/Spring prep, which ended on Stakes Day when a narrow second to Dreamforce at this track/distance. Has had the benefit of two trials under the belt, the latest being at Cranbourne last week. Proven weight carrier and has class on his side.

Best Bets & Quaddie Tips

BEST BET: Race Three Number 9 Mystyko

NEXT BEST: Race Eight Number 8 Graff

LONG SHOT: Race Five Number 9 Shamwow


Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):

Leg One: 2, 4, 10, 13

Leg Two: 2, 5, 9, 13, 15

Leg Three: 6, 8, 9, 10

Leg Four: 1, 5, 11, 12, 16

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