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Nine races will be run and won at Rosehill this Saturday where it is Winter Challenge Day. The weather is fine, the track is soft (7) and the rail is out eight metres for the entire circuit.

Winter Challenge 🏆: View the Field for the Winter Challenge


Race 1. (11:45) Sky Racing Active Hcp 1200m

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He’s all legs 2 Smart Image (Bet Now: $3.30 TOP ODDS) but he’s shown enough to suggest there is a decent engine under the hood. Debuted a couple of Wednesdays back at Warwick Farm where he had the suck run in behind the speed and when he got the gap, he was green in taking it but still finished best to win. He’s a good one and can beat these.


7 Hot ‘N’ Hazy (Bet Now: $3.70 TOP ODDS) is one of the more fascinating runners on the program given Danny Williams has said this horse could be a Kosciuszko candidate for him, which is a decent compliment given this guy is still a juvenile and has only had the one start, but it was an impressive win at Wagga and he ran time. Just one trial, albeit in fast time when winning, so a bit of guessing re fitness levels, but if you’re thinking Kosciuszko, you’d assume he’s forward and ready to go, wanting to make a statement.

Long Shot

10 Shaik (Bet Now: $9.50 TOP ODDS) is a daughter of Sebring for the Brad Widdup team that was an impressive debut winner at Newcastle before racing here a fortnight back in the North Pacific race and I liked the way she finished her race off behind the Team Hawkes colt, finishing a closing third. 1200m here should be fine and she looks to have some talent.

Race 2. (12:20) Xtravagant @newhaven Pk (78) 1200m

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6 Lillemor (Bet Now: $4.40 TOP ODDS) is a daughter of Hallowed Crown for the John O’Shea stable. Has been in work a fair while but continues to race really well. Sat on speed over 1100m here two weeks ago and kicked on well, but couldn’t quite see it out when fourth to Varda. Will likely lead this field up…last 100m will be her test.


9 Willowheart (Bet Now: $4.60 TOP ODDS) is a Chris Waller trained filly that resumes. Hasn’t raced since March 11 at Warwick Farm when leading and feeling the pinch late behind McCormack. Been given a good break, liked the trial and she has been accepted/scratched a couple of times, so I think watch the market and see what it does with her.

Long Shot

3 Freehearted (Bet Now: $15.00 TOP ODDS) is suited up to 1200m for Bjorn Baker. This mare ran over 1100m here two weeks ago when back near last throughout and failed to come on in a race dominated by those near the speed won by the in form Varda. Like her up to 1200m and I think the big tick for her is finding firmer footing.

Race 3. (12:55) Tab Highway Plate (c3) 1500m

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On top is 5 Group Think (Bet Now: $7.00 TOP ODDS) for the Ed O’Rourke team. This guy has done a really good job this prep. Negative ride cost him the win two back in the Prelude to the Grafton Guineas before racing in the Guineas and loved the way he found the line late behind Reus, with the likes of Foxborough and Fashchanel filling the placings, both of those being Saturday class, so that form just reads so well. Would love to see Hippo take advantage of the inside gate too.


13 Holy Empress (Bet Now: $26.00 TOP ODDS) looks to be going well for Scott Singleton and is a knockout chance here. Found the 1880m a bit too far two back at Newcastle before coming back to 1400m here a fortnight back when near last in the run and finished off quite well late behind Rothenburg. Like her up in trip again and is a definite winning chance.

Long Shot

11 But I Know… (Bet Now: $17.00 TOP ODDS) gee she’s been costly to me this prep, but has Ross Stitt got her worked out now? Put together some ordinary runs before being freshened up. Ran in the Mothers Gift on Grafton Cup Day and worked home well behind the in form Simply Sacred. Fitter, up in trip and is a winner at Rosehill. Her best is clearly good enough.

Race 4. (13:30) July Sprint 1100m

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Stack of speed engaged here, so think it sets up well for 6 Roheryn (Bet Now: $2.30 TOP ODDS), who really sprouted wings late when winning first up at this track/distance and did a great job given the tempo was against and he was first up. Key to him is clearly keeping him on the fresh and loved his tick over trial on Monday at Hawkesbury.


I’m wary of 2 Glenall (Bet Now: $6.00 TOP ODDS), resuming for Team Hawkes. Hasn’t raced since the Apollo in the early part of the Autumn when down the track behind Alizee but was at the end of a decent Spring/Summer prep and was looking for the paddock. Two trials leading in have been pretty good and he does have class on his side.

Long Shot

8 Albumin (Bet Now: $21.00 TOP ODDS) is crying out for a firmer deck and I think he’ll get it here. Ran over 1200m here two weeks ago where he was eased back from the wide gate to near last in the run and pretty much stayed there in the run behind Inanup. Like him back to 1100m and if this track can be firmer than recent runs, think he’ll run a big race at odds.

Race 5. (14:05) Asx Refinitiv Charity (78) 2400m

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3 Desert Path (Bet Now: $6.00) is ready to win for Chris Waller. Was on him at good odds three weeks ago at Randwick and have only just got over him getting beat. Perfect ride by J Mac but was just beaten by a hard fit, in form tough nut in Tigre Royale. He’s got room for improvement and should be better on firmer footing.


Giving respect to 4 California Longbow (Bet Now: $13.00) for Team Snowden. He comes here in winning form, having won over 2200m at Grafton on Ramornie Day when wearing a city performed mare, Chilly Cha Cha, to win well. He seems to be a horse that will get better as the distances increase so 2400m here I do like and he’s got more to come.

Long Shot

Back on firmer footing, want to give 5 Birth Of Venus (Bet Now: $8.50) another chance. This mare was working up to a win, but was disappointing two weeks ago here behind Korcho. I think the track was too wet for her that day. Track should be a bit firmer this time around and she seems to be a mare that wants more ground, so like her up to 2400m.

Race 6. (14:45) Tab (bm70) 1400m

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Back Me

Looks a lovely race for the Greg Hickman trained 3 Travest (Bet Now: $2.90). Like most, I was keen on him three weeks ago at Randwick, but even Tommy Berry admitted post race, it was a ride he would want over again. Just a bit too negative and left the three year old with an impossible task behind Edison. He’s a good horse and can make amends here.


1 Frosty Rocks (Bet Now: $6.50) will look to lead these from the front and if he can get a cheap furlong or two, he’ll take some catching. That’s what he tried to do over 1500m here two weeks ago when leading and he gave a good kick. Just found better in Lewis, who is tough and Nash lifted him over the line. Back to 1400m should be fine and he can easily win if allowed to dominate from the front.

Long Shot

Back to 1400m I do like for the Mark Newnham trained 2 Academy (Bet Now: $7.50). Closing second at this track/distance two back to Steel Diamond before stepping up to 1500m a fortnight back and wasn’t really suited by the stop/start nature of the race won by Lewis. Back to 1400m is a positive and can take this out if the tempo is genuine.

Race 7. (15:25) Winter Challenge 1500m

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Back Me

Yes, 3 Mugatoo (Bet Now: $4.00) has got bigger fish to dry, but he might well have the class to beat these first up. He did a fab job in his first Australian prep, graduating from a benchmark horse to a Group l performer, and in between was several outstanding wins, notably the Canberra Cup. Loved his trial on Monday and is going to be strong late.


7 Dealmaker (Bet Now: $8.00) is getting back up to a more ideal trip and I think he can prove hard to beat here despite not the best of records at Rosehill. Ran in the Winter Stakes two weeks ago here and liked the way he kept finding the line out wide when a close up fourth to Noble Boy, who was given a 12/10 by Collett. Now getting up to 1500m, hard fit, he’s hard to beat.

Long Shot

The map horse is 9 Special Missile (Bet Now: $8.00) for Team Freedman because he either leads or box seats behind Taikomochi. Ran in the Glasshouse at the Sunny Coast two weeks ago and tried hard when on speed. Just couldn’t hold out the finale of Krone and had to settle for second. Going good this veteran and maps very well.

Race 8. (16:05) Everest Carnival On Sale (88) 1300m

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4 Poetic Charmer (Bet Now: $6.50) is one of the better gambles on the program. Team Snowden has this horse going super. Resumed with a big win over 1200m at Randwick before staying at the trip here a fortnight back and loved the way he closed off from near last to run a close up third to Inanup. Fitter, up to 1300m, and if this track can be firmer, more of a better gamble.


Third up off a decent break, 2 Prime Candidate (Bet Now: $3.70) should just about be at peak fitness now for Bjorn Baker. Just needed the run fresh here behind Roheryn before racing over 1200m when near the speed and he tried hard under Collett. Just found one better in Inanup. Third up, hard fit, he’ll take some beating.

Long Shot

11 Spanish Dream (Bet Now: $41.00) is a daughter of Lope De Vega for Paul Cave that comes through the Vitesse race at Randwick. She got back in the run in a race where those near the speed were advantaged, so didn’t mind the way she found the line late in the piece behind the Waller mare. Can sit closer in the run and be dangerous at odds.

Race 9. (16:45) Rosehill Bowling Club (bm78) 1100m

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Back Me

5 Varda (Bet Now: $2.10) does look to have a touch of quality about her and I think she can continue her winning ways. Has won 2/2 this time in. Bias helped her when bolting up at Canterbury fresh before racing here two weeks ago where she took on stiffer competition but handled the depth rise with ease and was dominant again. Harder here, but think she can go on with it.


8 Zaniah (Bet Now: $7.00) has to be given another chance. Excellent resumption at Randwick behind Witherspoon before racing here two weeks ago where she did a bit of work in the run to get near the speed and failed to fire a shot in the straight behind Varda. She’s better than that. Resumption was good, which followed a sharp trial, so giving her another chance.

Long Shot

Not sure 11 Partners (Bet Now: $9.50) can win again, but he’ll give an almighty sight from the front, out rolling. That’s what he did when winning over 1200m here two weeks ago when heavily backed and was too good, just holding on after tearing along in front. Like him back to 1100m and love the booking of Tom Sherry.

Best Bets & Quaddie Tips

BEST BET: Race Six Number 3 Travest

NEXT BEST: Race Four Number 6 Roheryn

LONG SHOT: Race Three Number 5 Group Think


Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):

Leg One: 3

Leg Two: 3, 4, 7, 8, 9

Leg Three: 2, 4, 9, 11

Leg Four: 3, 5, 8, 11

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