Racing in Perth returns to Ascot this Saturday for a ripping card, highlighted by the Northerly Stakes (1400m). The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (15:42) Crown Sports Bar Plate 1000m
2 Problematic (Bet Now: $10.00) on top in the opener. Paul Jordan trains this son of Oratorio, who debuts with two trials under the belt, the latest coming over 1000m at Belmont when winning by four in decent enough time. Tricky gate, but blinkers on first with gate speed tells me there is intent for a win on debut.
5 Tinsnip (Bet Now: $5.00) is an Adam Durrant trained youngster who debuted at Belmont a fortnight back off an encouraging trial and on face value, he was quite disappointing behind Amarillo Rose, finishing near last and never coming into the mix. He’s better than that and Pike takes the ride, so he’s a potential sharp improver.
1 Kelvin (Bet Now: $6.00) is a Heritage gelding on debut for the Fred Kersley team. It’s hard to get a gauge on 400m trials because for the most part they are inconclusive. In saying that, in the short time he has trialled, he has looked pretty good and with the stable, they should always be respected because they rarely produce an early two year old.
Race 2. (16:18) Amelia Park Plate 1500m
4 True Attraction (Bet Now: $2.25) clearly for mine. Team Williams have a sharp three year old on their hands here and he looks the one to beat. Ran at Belmont last Wednesday where he was back and held up before eventually getting clear and savaging the line to just miss out. Drawn to get clear air and up to 1500m suits.
3 Blackwood River (Bet Now: $2.80) ran third in the race mentioned above that Pagan Image had no luck in. The race was won by Leading Girl and this bloke had the 1/1 sit and looked to travel well. Loomed to win but just ran out of puff late when third. Should have natural upside and Harvey remains on. Definite chance.
1 Pagan Image (Bet Now: $3.80) is a query at 1500m but has class on her side and rock hard fitness. Ran over 1400m two weeks ago at Belmont and it was a very odd steer, getting held up and blocked when the jock had better options. She’s a question mark at a strong 1500m, but I think the key to her chances is the tempo. If it’s a sit/sprint, she’s a chance.
Race 3. (17:07) Snap To Win A Melbourne Trip With Mumm Handicap (72+) 1600m
6 Reveille (Bet Now: $4.40) gets the nod for me. This Adam Durrant trained mare has teased to win a race for a while but she had to go back to the provincials at Northam to get the win and she bolted up. She has shown city class ability since pretty much day one and now she has that winning feeling, she can go on with it.
1 Cappo D’Oro (Bet Now: $4.40) is a Fred Kersley trained gelding who trialled up okay prior to resuming over the mile at Belmont a fortnight ago where he had the 1/1 off a strong gallop and despite chasing a good speed, he stuck on really well in defeat behind Dark Prospect. Very good record at Ascot and is a second up winner.
7 Mississippi Delta (Bet Now: $5.50) is a Team Williams trained mare who is heading down the Perth Cup path so it’ll be interesting to see how she resumes. She will be better suited over further but has a touch of class/quality on her side and though hasn’t beaten a runner home in two trials, she has trialled well.
Race 4. (17:46) Tabtouch Better Your Bet Handicap (1MW) 2200m
8 Altamont (Bet Now: $9.00) will do me in a bludger of a contest. Neville Parnham trains this gelding, who hadn’t won for a little while but he got a win on the board last time during the Kalgoorlie Carnival over 2100m when proving too good in a race that didn’t carry much depth. In saying that, it was a solidly run affair, so fitness won’t be an issue and I could have something on each way.
4 Bergio (Bet Now: $2.50) is three weeks between runs for Jason Miller since racing over 2100m at Belmont where the run was somewhat inconclusive. He was held up for a decent period in the straight but when he did get clear, he didn’t exactly ping. I think the break between runs should do him the world of good and Pike steers.
2 Toppa Dawozza (Bet Now: $6.50) is on the seven day back up for the Gary Crispin team since racing at Bunbury last Saturday where he pulled his head off for the most part but despite that, he worked home well without threatening behind Noir De Rue. Has a very good record at Ascot, so hopefully he relaxes in the run.
Race 5. (18:30) Crown Towers Handicap (66+) 1000m
This looks a perfect assignment for 2 Masquerade (Bet Now: $2.15) . Resumed over 1200m at Belmont a fortnight ago where he had the box seat sit and loomed large to beat Electric Light but class and fitness of that mare kicked in late. 2/2 at this track/distance, is a second up winner and just appear so well placed.
1 Night Voyage (Bet Now: $8.50) is a Martin Allan trained gelding who is just an absolute beauty. Got another well deserved win at Belmont two weeks back where he had the sweet sit just off the pace and put them away quite comfortably. Tricky draw to overcome, but is a proven weight carrier and has to be respected.
7 Just A Fluke (Bet Now: $23.00) ran fourth in the race won by Night Voyage and I thought his effort was full of merit. He attempted to lead all the way and gave a decent kick but just ran out of puff late. He is a second up winner, a winner at Ascot and generally, these early meetings at Ascot do suit on speed runners.
Race 6. (19:05) R.S Crawford Stakes 1000m
I’ll take a chance on 3 Dainty Tess (Bet Now: $3.20). Dan Morton trains this mare, who comes back to WA after a mixed SA campaign, which included down the track efforts in the Robert Sangster and Proud Miss. She is a bomb when produced fresh, loves Ascot and she still holds the record for producing the fastest late splits in WA racing.
Great to see 1 State Solicitor (Bet Now: $2.70) back at the races. He was the boom sprinter leading into the Carnival last year and after a brilliant win in the Colonel Reeves, he started fav in the Winterbottom but nothing went right. Has just had the one trial in readiness for his return and he looked very sharp in winning.
5 Durendal (Bet Now: $5.50) lacks the class of a couple of these, but looks to get map favours. Chris Gangemi trains this former Victorian, who has had a couple of preps in WA where he is yet to win but has placed on a stack of occasions. Slick trial a few weeks back and should get run of the race from the draw.
Race 7. (19:40) Northerly Stakes 1400m
I’m a believer in 9 Galaxy Star (Bet Now: $1.90) winning either the Railway or Kingston Town and I think she can kick off the prep with a win. Has won eight of his ten starts and got her rating up in the early part of the Winter with three wins. Looks to have come back in super order if the trials are any guide and Pike obviously steers.
1 Great Shot (Bet Now: $9.50) is the defending Railway winner who should lead these for fun and give a great sight. He resumed in the Birthday Stakes a fortnight ago where he got a soft lead but was no match for the class of Enticing Star. Loves Ascot, should get a soft lead and prove very hard to run down.
Big watch on 2 Star Exhibit (Bet Now: $14.00), who hasn’t raced for over a year since racing in the Craven Plate at Randwick when a close up fourth to Classic Uniform. The form guide says he’s still trained by Darren Weir but has trialled twice in WA for his return and has looked quite good. Definite yard/market watch.
Race 8. (20:17) The Merrywell Handicap (66+) 1400m
Like 8 Jeraft (Bet Now: $4.60) in the last. Ran an unlucky fourth over 1300m at Belmont two weeks back and you could make a case that he should have won. Got held up in the straight when seemingly full of running and only got clear late. He loves racing at Ascot and should get a sweet run near the speed now he’s getting fitter.
4 Bold Success (Bet Now: $3.80) is a winner…never thought I’d say that but he’s won two of his past three and is starting to put it all together, finally. Ran over 1300m at Belmont a fortnight ago and I thought it was a brilliant steer from Pike that got him home. Had the beaut sit, waited to let down and clung on with Pike lifting him. Just has to stretch it to 1400m.
The rise to 1400m should suit 1 Mad Brad (Bet Now: $31.00). Ran over 1200m at Belmont last time where he got back in the run and while he was never really a winning threat, he worked home well behind an in form mare, Electric Light. Horror draw makes things tough for him, but if they go silly, he’ll have last say.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Two Number 4 True Attraction
NEXT BEST: Race Three Number 6 Reveille
LONG SHOT: Race Four Number 8 Altamont
Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):
Leg One: 1, 2, 3, 7, 10
Leg Two: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Leg Three: 1, 2, 3, 9
Leg Four: 1, 3, 4, 8
$50 Investment= 12.50% 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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