Nine races have been set down for Ascot this Saturday, headlined by the Miss Andretti Stakes (1100m). The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is out five metres for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (15:37) Vale Harold "Boy" Hutchinson Handicap 1200m
1 Money Matters (Bet Now: $1.60), if he can overcome a tricky barrier, should be too good for this lot. Just have to trust what you saw last Wednesday at Bunbury. I think that field had stronger depth than what he faces here, and what he did last week was spank them by nearly nine lengths and did it with something in hand, running good time. Just needs luck from the gate and he wins.
2 Ohbeeh (Bet Now: $5.50) rises sharply in grade/depth but there was a bit to like about his debut win at Bunbury last Wednesday. Showed good early toe to lead before booting clear on the turn and held a safe margin to the line in what I thought was an impressive performance at start one. Looks the leader here and will give a bold sight I’m sure.
4 Eye Of The Day (Bet Now: $26.00) is a daughter of Blackfriars for Paul Jordan that resumes. This girl hasn’t raced since October 10 at York when on speed, keen in the run, and feeling the pinch late. Usually sprints well fresh and didn’t mind the way she went in her Belmont trial. Likely sits near the pace and can give some cheek at odds.
Race 2. (16:17) Westspeed Platinum Maiden 1100m
7 Diamond Trade (Bet Now: $4.00) is comfortably the best horse in the race and it all depends what happens from the wide gate. If she’s able to get cover, she should be beating these. Resumes for the Harvey camp, having not raced since August 10 at Belmont when fifth to a progressive type in Stevie’s Wonder. Was sharp in a recent Belmont trial win. Just hope she can get luck in the run.
1 War Anthem (Bet Now: $3.70) is a very consistent animal for Bruce Watkins who rarely runs a bad race. Problem being he doesn’t win. He’s had nine cracks at it and has run top three on eight occasions, the latest coming at Bunbury last Wednesday when third to Ohbeeh. Like him back to 1100m, he’ll run well…just couldn’t back to win.
12 Peggie’s Joy (Bet Now: $9.00) should be suited up in trip for the Bruce Watkins stable. Ran over 1000m at Bunbury last time, coming back from 1100m, and worked home well without a great deal of luck in the straight when fourth to Cockyjoy. Tricky gate for her, but I think she’ll be strong at the end if she gets cover and a drag up into the race.
Race 3. (16:57) Amelia Park Plate 1100m
If he runs up to the trial win on Monday, 3 Convalesce (Bet Now: $5.50) will be beating these. Playing God colt that is having start one for Steve Wolfe. Had two trials in the Spring before being tipped out. Back in work, trialled at Lark Hill on Monday and was one of the standouts of the morning. Was bolting under McGruddy and had plenty in hand. Keen on him.
2 Brooklyn Pier (Bet Now: $7.00) is a key threat for me. Magnus colt for Neville Parnham that is on debut off the back of two trials, the latest coming last week at Belmont over 1000m when leading throughout and ran sub 60 in winning the trial, which is always a good sign for an unraced youngster at Belmont. Draws well, has early speed and finds what I think is a weak 2YO race.
7 Sunnysilk (Bet Now: $7.00) has the race experience on her side and that will carry her a long way towards victory. Real eye catcher on debut before stepping back to 1000m here two weeks ago where I was keen on her but gee she was disappointing I thought after getting every chance in the run. Back up in trip, ridden cold, she can be more effective.
Race 4. (17:37) Glenroy Chaff Handicap 1600m
3 Star Value (Bet Now: $5.50) on top for me. Dion Luciani trains this gelding, who has been excellent in two runs back from a break. Resumed with a close up third at Pinjarra behind Flower Of War before going to this track/distance when fourth to Over There and had no clear air at all in the straight. Better luck this time around, he can take this out.
Hard to knock the way 9 Patristic (Bet Now: $6.50) is racing at the moment, winning his past two at Pinjarra thanks to sustained speed from the front and has just run his rivals into submission. He should lead this field up and will run along at a decent clip…may get the staggers late, but will be giving a great sight for those that are on.
8 Butterlea Lad (Bet Now: $13.00) is third up from a break and should be close to peak fitness now. Comes through the Over There race from two weeks ago at this track/distance when on speed and giving a good kick but feeling the pinch late when third. Lands near the front again, but may cop pressure. Has the right form though to be around the mark.
Race 5. (18:14) Miss Andretti Stakes 1100m
I think class will come to the fore in the shape of 2 Valour Road (Bet Now: $2.00) for Simon Miller. Hasn’t raced since December 7 in the Scahill over 1400m when running a very game second to The Celt, who had the suck run in behind and was too good. He’s a really good horse with fresh legs and back to 1100m, he appeals big time to me.
4 Belter (Bet Now: $5.50) is a Sean Casey trained sprinter that tried to go with Fabergino first up in the Summer Scorcher two weeks ago but that speed demon was just too nippy for the field. To his credit, despite being first up off a good break, Belter clung on for second. Has that busted him for the prep? Only time will tell.
I think 3 Profit Street (Bet Now: $9.50) isn’t far off a win for Lindsey Smith. He comes through the Summer Scorcher where he was run off his legs and never in the hunt but finished off his race pretty well. Up in trip clearly a tick for this veteran and from the inside gate, he can sit much closer in the run if need be. Hard to beat if he can sit that pair or two closer.
Race 6. (18:50) David Della Rocca Handicap 2100m
Chris Graham does have work to do from the wide gate with 6 Morning Song (Bet Now: $5.00), but she’s the best horse in the race I feel and comes here in winning form, looking like she will eat up 2100m. Ran over 1800m here three weeks ago and was very impressive in winning under Pike, being strong to the line and through it, suggesting 2100m will be fine. Happy to be in her corner.
3 Alimentaria (Bet Now: $3.00) is racing really well this time in and slightly back in depth, she’s hard to beat. Ran over 2200m two weeks ago where she was given a lovely steer just off the speed and tried hard when third to Mackenzie Brooke. Creeping up in the weights and I reckon back slightly in trip should suit her. One of the leading chances.
4 Celtic Court (Bet Now: $11.00) is a bit of an unknown at the trip, but this Brett Pope trained gelding is racing as if he will be suited at it. Ran over the mile last Saturday at Pinjarra and didn’t mind the way he finished his race off behind Arnie’s Boy after getting back and held up. First look at 2000m+, but overall, this isn’t a strong race.
Race 7. (19:20) Terrence Brown 80th Birthday Handicap 1400m
8 Why Choose Her (Bet Now: $7.00) clearly on top for me. Ashley Maley trains this mare, who is on the seven day back up after coming back in trip last Saturday at Pinjarra to 1200m and loved the way she found the line late behind Flower Of War. She’ll eat up the extra 200m here and if she can get cover from the gate, she’ll take a power of beating.
3 Coming Around (Bet Now: $1.85) is a Team Williams trained gelding who is third up here and should be close to peak fitness. Lovely ride from Pike saw him win three weeks ago at this track/distance, getting the suck run behind the speed and finished off too well to get the job done. Bit harder here, but got upside and in the right stable.
Up in trip looks a big tick for the Jason Pateman trained 1 Gunnago (Bet Now: $18.00). Just missed out on the win first up at Pinjarra when the bob of the head was the difference between him beating Flower Of War. Then raced over 1200m here two weeks ago and was awful behind Speeding Comet. Think fitter, up in trip, with Mitch Pateman back on, he can improve big time.
Race 8. (19:50) Seacorp Handicap 1000m
Think 10 Fairview (Bet Now: $9.00) is going well and can run a decent race here at odds. Just missed out on the win first up when a narrow second to Classic Pro before racing here two weeks ago when pulling up with excuses behind Speeding Comet. Fast run 1000m looks her go in life, draws a soft gate and if the breaks go her way, she’s going well enough to take advantage.
Back to 1000m I like for the David Harrison trained 4 Chix Pic (Bet Now: $4.50). Resumed over 1200m here three weeks ago when near the speed and while he had his chance and was held, he was far from disgraced behind Carocapo. Think he’ll come right on from that, back to 1000m, gets run of the race from the gate and is hard to beat.
Not sure he wins, but for wider multiples, I’d be including the Mark Bairstow trained 5 Dam Ready (Bet Now: $34.00), who is over a month between runs since racing at this track/distance where he had no luck at all in the straight, getting held up like it was a barrier trial. Likes his races spaced it seems and can run a positive race with better luck in running.
Race 9. (20:25) Crown Sports Bar Handicap 1000m
5 To Rise Again (Bet Now: $8.00) is a massive improver here I feel. Two runs back from a spell have been okay without setting the world on fire, the latest coming three weeks ago here behind State Attorney after racing keen in the run. Draws a soft gate to do no work off a good speed and if the breaks go his way, he can bounce back at odds.
8 Imperial Venus (Bet Now: $5.50) is one of the bigger queries on the program. Six year old gelding for Team Williams that resumes, having not raced since September 18 at Belmont when down the track on soft ground. Convinced he’s a dry tracker and has been tuned up for his return with a couple of impressive trials, and Pike is booked, so watch the market.
4 Citichant (Bet Now: $11.00) is a Paul Jordan trained mare that is second up, having resumed over 1100m at Bunbury when wide with cover and failing to come on in a disappointing resumption. She’s better than that, and I like her back to 1000m. Draws wide, but I’m hoping Staples lets her stride from the start and uses her early speed.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Three Number 3 Convalesce
NEXT BEST: Race One Number 1 Money Matters
LONG SHOT: Race Nine Number 5 To Rise Again
Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):
Leg One: 3, 6
Leg Two: 8
Leg Three: 1, 4, 5, 10
Leg Four: 1, 4, 5, 8, 9
$50 Investment = 125% 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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