With rain earlier in the week, I expect the track to be in the dead-slow range for this weekâ€™s meeting. The quality of the fields is slightly stronger than last Saturday but the prospect of a rain-affected track may see some of the races decimated by scratchings. Here is my preview of race 8, the Coca Cola NMW Handicap over 1200m. There should be a strong tempo here with around half the field heading forward early.
Warrior Within: Didnâ€™t fire last preparation and the 1200m will be too short here despite the expected pace up front.
Mondean: Consistent gelding who races on the speed but is suspect over 1200m on a firm surface. The heavier the track, the more his chances improve.
Godâ€™s Window: Mackay galloper who likes to play catch me if you can. Gets in well at the weights with the claim but Iâ€™m not sure the form out of its last city run is overly strong. Promote if the track is heavy
Naynay: Former North Queensland galloper who finished behind a couple of handy horses first up. Heâ€™ll be finishing hard late but I donâ€™t think he has the class to win this.
Seek and Find: Had no hope last start after over-racing and the off-side blinker is now off. Prepared to risk him here with the wide barrier and the prospect of a wet track.
Lucky Deluchi: Likes a rain-affected surface but isnâ€™t going well enough to win here.
Jennabee: Another horse who races on the speed. Look for her 2nd up in mares company.
Heart to Fear: Ran 3rd behind Mr Shadow Boxer last start which ran 2nd last week in town. Will sit off the speed and try and run over the top of them. Just donâ€™t think sheâ€™s good enough to win this.
Before the Storm: Not going well enough to win
County Sheriff: Couldnâ€™t win at Bundaberg so has no chance here.
The Cranberries: Scratched
Chastelain: Hasnâ€™t won over 1200m or first up and has a very poor win strike rate. He did race some handy horses last prep however and a heavy track will enhance his chances. Include in multiples.
Darshan Joh: Northern NSW galloper who handles all track surfaces. Heâ€™s a good each-way hope.
Dee Bee Nine: Has been rolled on a few occasions at short odds. His first up run was okay and the blinkers go off here. Probably the horse to beat if heâ€™s right.
Slugsbrothernugget: Heâ€™s always running on well but his win strike rate is poor and surely couldnâ€™t win here.
Vivaheart: Needs it wet and still only a place chance on a rain-affected track.
Auld Lang Syne: No chance
No Kobe No: Blinkers on and gelded but would need to have grown another leg to test these.
Going with Dee Bee Nine here. I just hope the 1200 isnâ€™t too short 2nd up but he has more promise than most of these. A rain-affected track shouldnâ€™t be too much of a concern but an absolute bog is not ideal. A slow/heavy track enhances the chances of Mondean, Godâ€™s Window and Chastelain. Darshan Joh has also worked well through his grades this preparation and isnâ€™t without a chance.
Written by Peter Addley
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