The biggest raceday in Newcastle during the Autumn comes around this Wednesday with Newmarket Handicap Day being the lone meeting in New South Wales for the day. The $125,000 Group lll feature race, run over 1400m, has attracted a quality field, headed up by the ever consistent Pinwheel.
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Race One (13:18) : Angelic Events Maiden Plate 1200m Form Guide
Back Me: I don’t think this maiden will be in the memory bank for too much longer. The only one here who has shown a glimpse of decent talent is Andsoitiswritten (Best Odds: $1.90) so he goes on top. Made his debut in November and was a close up third to Redhawks at Canterbury, freshened up a month, and ran sixth at the same track. Spelled, and trialled really nicely a couple of weeks back behind Meliora, a stakes winner.
Big Danger: Teretina (Best Odds: $3.50) was forced to sit wide with no cover at Hawkesbury last time out and stuck on quite well I thought for fourth. Doesn’t have to improve much to be a force here, and has the fitness edge on the top tip.
Roughie: Crazyonyou (Best Odds: $5.00) was caught wide in one of those 900m scampers here a couple of weeks back and stuck on nicely in what I thought was a pretty strong race with plenty of depth. Won’t get caught wide here and will only benefit with the extra distance.
Race Two (13:53) : Peacock Lane Maiden Plate 1200m Form Guide
Back Me: Darren Smith has a great strike rate in general, but I’d say he has an even better strike rate when producing horses to win on debut, and I think that will happen here with King Caper (Best Odds: $3.00). Has had three trials in the last couple of months, the latest being on February 19 at Wyong when finishing second. Like the first race, the field doesn’t carry much depth, and on the trials, he looks to have ability.
Big Danger: More By Chance (Best Odds: $3.50) ran an encouraging third on debut behind two very smart types at Gosford, then was caught wide at Hawkesbury on the speed and faded late. With a more conservative ride, he can improve enough to figure in the finish.
Roughie: Ezi Pleased (Best Odds: $6.50) wasn’t fancied in betting first up on his home track at Wyong, but worked to the line really nicely late to run fourth to a handy youngster in Richard The First. Big drop in depth here, and if he holds that form at the very least, he’ll go close.
Race Three (14:28) : Multi Media Maiden Plate 1600m Form Guide
Back Me: Best bet on the card here in Vayakhan (Best Odds: $2.20), who was backed as if unbeatable at his Australian debut over this track/distance a few weeks back, and looked the winner 300m, but his condition gave way in the last 150m and he ended up running a close second. Should improve big time off that, and gets back to a firmer surface. Only bad luck will beat him.
Big Danger: Pera Pera (Best Odds: $3.00) has been a costly horse for punters, starting odds on at two of his past three starts and getting beat. Looked the winner at Hawkesbury, but just didn’t finish the race off. He is a definite danger, but from a punters perspective, he is a money muncher. Me, I’d rather watch him.
Roughie: I’ve backed Lukey (Best Odds: $34.00) in both career runs, and he has been excellent at each, both at Muswellbrook. Pulled his head off on debut which cost him, then did work early last start and was only grabbed in the last 50m. Takes on a couple of handy types here, but he certainly will be winning races and should run well here.
Race Four (15:03) : Merran Wiggins Travel Handicap (65) 1600m Form Guide
Back Me: One More (Best Odds: $2.80) was the subject of good support in betting when racing here a couple of weeks back, but just couldn’t get past the leader, who had a picnic in front and kicked hard. I think with Nash being booked, they’ll look to press forward, and in recent meetings at Newcastle, sitting on the pace has been an advantage.
Big Danger: Dwindle (Best Odds: $3.40) seems to save his best for this track, with two of his better career runs coming here. Was last seen late last month at Kensington when a fair sixth. Drops significantly in grade and looks a leading player.
Roughie: Roman Eagle (Best Odds: $16.00) saves his best for bone dry tracks, which he should get here. Caught wide at Cessnock and stuck on well to run a close up third. Takes on a better bunch of horses here, but gets the claim for Aaron Bullock, who is one of the real rising stars in the apprentice ranks in the New South Wales provincial/country area.
Race Five (15:40) : Ioof Country Cup (65) 1200m Form Guide
Back Me: Not Doubtful (Best Odds: $7.00) looks just about ready to win for mine. Given a spell and resumed with a slashing third at Port Macquarie, then went even better at Taree, carrying 59kg. Drops in weight, Bowman booked, drawn well and is definitely looking for this distance.
Big Danger: Timeless Prince (Best Odds: $4.80) took forever to wind up at Coffs Harbour last start, but once he did, he really savaged the line and only got beat in a photo finish. Gets in well after the claim for Kissick and is racing in career best form.
Roughie: Chiliad (Best Odds: $2.50) would have need binoculars to see the rail last start at Eagle Farm. Caught wide all the way and ran very bravely in the straight to run a game third in a much harder race than this. Near unbeatable at the track and at the distance, so he must be included.
Race Six (16:20) : Tal Beaumont 2YO Handicap 1400m Form Guide
Back Me: Horrendous two year old race. If Hampton Court (Best Odds: $4.00) produces his debut second to Brazen Beau, he simply should be too good for these. Forget he went around in the Silver Slipper given he was on the worst part of the track and at this stage of his career, he is not up to that grade. Very thin race here, and if he is indeed going to step back up to Saturday company, he has to take care of this lot and I think he will.
Big Danger: Belle Rings (Best Odds: $51.00) has had four career trials to prepare for her debut, and I think she has been quite solid in each of the quartet, sitting back and running on, so the 1400m on debut looks ideal, and is drawn beautifully for Clarry Conners, a master trainer of the youngsters.
Roughie: Love To Death (Best Odds: $26.00) ran a close up third to Silver Slipper runner up Press Report in a Rosehill barrier trial, and looked handy enough in that to suggest she will be in the mix in a race like this.
Race Seven (17:00) : Enviropacific Newmarket Handicap 1400m Form Guide
Back Me: Putting Strawberry Boy (Best Odds: $7.50) on top, simply based on the suspicion that the track will suit the leaders, which is this bloke. He was very good I thought first up, doing a stack of work to find the lead, then receiving pressure in front before kicking clear 300m, then peaking on the run. Is a winner at the track, near unbeatable second up, drawn well, Cassidy rides, hard to beat.
Big Danger: Pinwheel (Best Odds: $6.50) doesn’t know how to run a bad race. Placed at Group l level in the Futurity behind Moment Of Change before coming to Warwick Farm and running a brave fourth in the Liverpool Cup. The clear class runner, and that will take this grand campaigner a long way.
Roughie: Centennial Park (Best Odds: $17.00) is still loving his racing, as we saw with his slashing third in the National Sprint at Canberra behind a future Group l winner in Messene. Drops 3kg here, and will be much closer to the tempo from the paint.
Race Eight (17:40) : Turfcare Handicap (70) 1300m Form Guide
Back Me: Forget that Hydro (Best Odds: $4.80) went around first up at Kensington. The blinkers were on and he took charge of Tommy Berry, going at a fast tempo before weakening out of it in the straight to run last. Blinkers off, Nash back on, drawn to lead, and I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt.
Big Danger: Pompidou (Best Odds: $5.50) really attacked the line last time out at Scone, powering to the front close to home and going right on with it. That was his first win in a little while, so his confidence will be high. Hard to beat.
Roughie: Garcia (Best Odds: $12.00) ran twice during the Spring, winning on both occasions at Scone and Muswellbrook respectively. What he beat is a touch questionable, but the way he did it on both occasions was impressive.
Best Bet: Race Three Number 2 Vayakhan (Best Odds: $2.20)
Next Best: Race Six Number 3 Hampton Court (Best Odds: $4.00)
Best Roughie: Race Five Number 7 Not Doubtful (Best Odds: $7.00)
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Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):
Leg One: 1, 2, 3, 7
Leg Two: 3, 10, 11, 12
Leg Three: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Leg Four: 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 12
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All odds are subject to change. Odds listed are correct at the time of the latest update.
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