The final Group l of the racing season comes around this weekend at the Gold Coast with the running of the $500,000 Sky Racing Tatts Tiara (1400m), where Najoom and Srikandi hold sway in betting. The weather is fine, the track is soft (7) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.
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Race One (12:07pm) : Hardy Brothers Jewellers Handicap 1200m: Form Guide
Back Me: Going with some value here in the shape of Outback Saga (Best Odds: $7.50) . He stuck to the task very well two back at Stakes level behind Mohave before going to the Sunshine Coast and he was excellent when fourth to Board Director given he was eased back to near last from the wide and worked home very strongly. He is a horse who is really competitive at this level, and with the right luck, he can win this, and he is at the right odds.
Big Danger: Cantbuybetter (Best Odds: $4.20) was unbeaten in four runs before contesting the Queensland Day (1200m) and he simply couldn’t get into the race from the wide gate and from the back when ninth to Mohave, beaten just under three lengths. He is a very good youngster, and from all reports, there was some serious interest from Hong Kong, so take that however you want, but this horse should improve sharply.
Roughie: Freezethemillions (Best Odds: $12.00) trialled really well here prior to resuming at the Sunshine Coast where he was simply dreadful, running second last, beaten just under seven lengths. He is much better than that, as we saw early on last prep when he was getting back and working home powerfully. I am tipping him to improve and be a contender here.
Race Two (12:42pm) : Carlton Mid Plate (Class6) 1400m: Form Guide
Back Me: Putting Kazoom (Best Odds: $4.40) on top. This Kurt Goldman trained gelding ran over this distance at Rosehill a couple of weeks back and loomed up to win the race, but the horse inside him, Careless, kicked back hard and proved too good late. That horse will go around at Randwick and is a leading chance, and I am confident that form will hold up. Draws well, Angland sticks…looks the clear horse to beat.
Big Danger: L’entrecote (Best Odds: $8.00) resumed over 1200m at the Sunshine Coast and finished off well late when second to Le Cap, beaten two lengths. He didn’t have a public trial prior to that, so I am tipping good improvement from this bloke, draws well and can handle some give in the track.
Roughie: Scarborough (Best Odds: $17.00) resumes here for Toby Edmonds after a pretty solid prep. He started out very strong in the campaign, but he tapered away badly towards the end. He resumes here off th back of a couple of quiet trials, and while his best form is over a bit longer, he can run very well fresh and is trained on the track.
Race Three (1:17pm) : 150 Years Of Tatts Stakes 1400m: Form Guide
Back Me: Clearly putting Harlem River (Best Odds: $1.75) on top. This Coolmore filly for Gai has had two starts and has finished runner up on both occasions, both times behind Flippant and both at Stakes level. There is no Flippant here now, this looks a very suitable race for her now and she prove a very tough nut to crack.
Big Danger: A Real Heartbreaka (Best Odds: $21.00) is a John Thompson trained filly by Real Saga who resumed at the Sunshine Coast a couple of weeks back and probably cost herself victory in running fourth given she bungled the start and used plenty of energy to find a spot, so it was no surprise to see her weaken late. She looks like a filly with talent, and again, taking Harlem River aside, this isn’t an overly strong race. An exotic player at odds.
Roughie: Positive Charge (Best Odds: $41.00) ran fifth to Flippant in the Lancaster (1200m), beaten eight lengths, but unfortunately for her supporters, she was stuck wide no cover for the entire trip. Taking aside Harlem River, this is a significant drop in grade, and if she can get better luck here, she should be in the mix, but I doubt she can beat Harlem River.
Race Four (1:57pm) : Singapore Airlines Daybreak Lover 1800m: Form Guide
Back Me: The clear class runner is Bachman (Best Odds: $4.50) so I’ll go with him here. He was a big flop in the Grand Prix (2020m) before stepping back in journey when contesting the QLD Guineas (1600m) and he was much better when finishing off very strongly to run second to Jabali, beaten 1.3L. Back up to 1800m looks ideal, and really, given his form and record…it looks his race to lose.
Big Danger: Rhodin Drive (Best Odds: $15.00) also performed poorly in the Grand Prix, and like Bachman, he dropped back in distance at his following, which was last Saturday at Ipswich, he worked home very strongly when third. That was over 1350m, and I think that, along with the tight turning track, he just wasn’t suited. Home track now, up in trip, fit, and like I said last week, he has form lines that include Hallowed Crown and Winx. Definite threat.
Roughie: Old Habits (Best Odds: $41.00) comes to Queensland after a solid run last time out over 1800m at Rosehill when working home well from the back to finish fifth to a progressive Anthony Cummings type, Skyline Blush, beaten 3.6L. He has had the run at 1800m now and Tye Angland rides, and he has been the form rider in Sydney over the past few weeks.
Race Five (2:37pm) : Southbank Insurance Brokers Handicap 1800m: Form Guide
Back Me: If The Offer (Best Odds: $4.75) turns up fit and healthy, he should be beating these. He wasn’t too bad in the Spring, but he didn’t really threaten to greet the judge. Tipped out after running 11th in the Caulfield Cup, then was found to be injured leading up to the Melbourne Cup. He has had a good break and has tuned up for this with a couple of solid barrier trials at Randwick. He loves a wet track, and his first up form is excellent. Looks the winner.
Big Danger: Lucky Lago (Best Odds: $4.80) nearly should have won last time out in the Wayne Wilson (1600m) but got badly checked in the straight and lost all momentum, then went to the line under a hold. She loves give in the ground, up to 1800m suits and the stable has had a fabulous Winter carnival.
Roughie: Trakstar (Best Odds: $11.00) can be very, very, very frustrating to follow, but he has been much more genuine this time, which saw him win three back at Doomben before two excellent efforts at Stakes level, the latest being when fourth to Frespanol, beaten just over a length. His form at the Gold Coast has been pretty good, gets up to an ideal trip and can handle a wet track. A chance.
Race Six (3:17pm) : Carlton Draught Tatts Cup 2400m: Form Guide
Back Me: Putting Faust (Best Odds: $4.60) on top. He has been given a month break after leading all the way to win the Premiers Cup (2020m) at Doomben, aided by a peach front running steer from McDonald. The month break doesn’t worry me, because most of these are on the quick back up, and he has the fresh legs, and though he is a query at 2400m, the depth here isn’t as strong compared to what he has faced in two previous 2400m runs.
Big Danger: Epingle (Best Odds: $4.40) tried very hard in the Brisbane Cup (2200m) and looked the winner, but she just couldn’t quite peg back upset winner Jetset Lad. She clearly has the best formlines for a race like this, and even though she is carrying topweight of 59kg, she is only 5kg over the minimum, so she’s very well suited at the weights, and if the rain comes, her chances are enhanced.
Roughie: The other horse with good upside is the Mike Moroney trained Surpass (Best Odds: $13.00), who ran seventh in the Brisbane Cup, but he was far from disgraced, beaten just over three lengths. Has a great record at this distance range, loves give in the ground and if he is ridden with cover to be saved for the straight, he can improve enough to figure in the finish.
Race Seven (3:57pm) : Sky Racing Tatts Tiara 1400m: Form Guide
Back Me: If ever a horse deserved to win a major, then it is surely Catkins (Best Odds: $5.50), the bonny mare for Chris Waller who races so consistently, but just can’t crack it for a Group l. She resumed off a freshen up in the Dane Ripper (1350m) and on face value, she was disappointing, but it was a very firm surface and she was leading which isn’t her go. She’s fitter, gets some give in the ground now and up to 1400m looks perfect. She gets her chance.
Big Danger: At first glance, I put the line through Srikandi (Best Odds: $5.00) for the obvious reason that she drew the outside gate. But on closer inspection, plus the scratchings, she is right in this race as the one to beat. The Stradbroke was pretty much a no contest given she walked them in front, but she still won the best race Queensland has to offer. She should very comfortably get over from the gate, sit on speed and prove very hard to get past.
Roughie: A couple of horses to include at odds are Politeness (Best Odds: $21.00) and Diademe. Politeness ran last in the Dane Ripper, but the pace wasn’t suited to her racing pattern and the track was way too firm for her. The forecast for rain will be music to the ears of her supporters, up to 1400m should suit, and we know that if ridden properly and saved for the straight, she can be lethal. The other value runner is Diademe, who hasn’t raced since the Dark Jewel (1400m) at Scone and worked home well when sixth, but the reason I like her at odds is that she trialled so well a couple of weeks back at Randwick. She looks right on target and doesn’t deserve to be such massive odds.
Race Eight (4:32pm) : Tatts 150th Anniversary Stakes 1200m: Form Guide
Back Me: Target In Sight (Best Odds: $7.50) produced the run of the day IMO at Randwick a fortnight back in the June Stakes (1100m) and worked home strongly out wide against the bias to run fourth to Wouldn’t It Be Nice, beaten four lengths. He should get a more fair racing surface here, he doesn’t mind give in the ground and up to 1200m should suit.
Big Danger: Into The Red (Best Odds: $7.00) produced an electric turn of foot along the rail to to win the Ascot Handicap (1200m) before sitting wide no cover on speed in the Hinkler and sticking on very well when third, beaten a half length. His record at the Gold Coast isn’t too flash, but he hasn’t been racing any better. Bred to swim also, so if the rain comes, he’ll be a serious threat.
Roughie: Final Crescendo (Best Odds: $34.00) could represent some value here. His three runs this time in haven’t really set the world on fire, but I didn’t mind the way he trialled recently at the Gold Coast when second to Najoom, who would have gone around as the favourite in the Tiara had she not been scratched. He draws a soft gate, loves his home track, loves 1200m and he can handle a wet track.
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BEST BET: Race Seven Number 4 Catkins
NEXT BEST: Race Five Number 1 The Offer
VALUE: Race One Number 8 Outback Saga
Quaddie Tips (Races Five Through To Eight):
Leg One: 1
Leg Two: 1, 2, 4, 6
Leg Three: 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 10, 12
Leg Four: 2, 8, 10, 13
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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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