An outstanding card of racing has been assembled for Randwick on Saturday where the champion mare Winx will kick off her 2018 campaign in the Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m). The weather is fine, the track is soft (5) and the rail is out three metres for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (12:25) TAB Highway Plate (Class 3) 1600m
9 Sepoy’s Choice (Bet Now: $10.00) is a beautifully bred gelding for the Matty Dunn stable who won a strong maiden two back at Ballina before stepping up to the Grafton mile where he beat all bar Polemic, a former Godolphin horse who had city form, so that does read well for this and he has had the hard mile run under the belt.
12 So It Is (Bet Now: $6.00) is a Team Longmire trained galloper who should be suited back to the mile. Reckon the 1800m saw it out a fortnight back in a Highway here. Looked to travel well under McDougall and presented at the right time but just didn’t see it out. Much better placed here I feel and is a definite winning chance.
8 Biodynamic (Bet Now: $23.00) is the big watch. Former UK galloper who made his Australian debut for the Danny Williams camp in the Goulburn Country Championship heat last Saturday where he settled last in the run and stayed there behind Kopi Luwak. His UK form would see him trounce these. Definite yard/market watch.
Race 2. (13:05) The Tahiti Travel Connection Handicap (85) 2000m
Going to side with 12 Tamarack (Bet Now: $6.00). Joe Pride trains this four year old, who is knocking on the door to win another race and he got the win on the board a couple of Friday nights back at Canterbury when badly held up before eventually getting clear air and savaging the line to get the win. Randwick 2000m is ideal and has upside, plus brings different form.
10 Just Shine (Bet Now: $4.50) is a Clare Cunningham trained stayer who rises a fair bit in grade, but gee he is racing well. Looked in a bit of trouble last Wednesday over 1900m at Canterbury but when he got the split, he exploded and won quite impressively. The Randwick 2000m should only suit and he has a stack of upside.
2 So Willie (Bet Now: $26.00) is the one that intrigues me. On his day, he can certainly win this, but he has just done nothing this prep, albeit in much stronger races than this. Chris Waller has taken all the gear off with him, and has told stewards he intends for the horse to be ridden on speed, something he hasn’t done in a long time. Big watch back in grade.
Race 3. (13:40) Schweppes Skyline Stakes 1200m
Siding with 1 Irish Bet (Bet Now: $8.50). China Horse Club colt for the John O’Shea team who resumed in the Pierro Plate here a fortnight back where he got back off the pace and did come off the bit a fair way out but he stuck on and was good to the line and through it when third to Santos. Think the rise to 1200m suits and he should take some holding out.
2 Santos (Bet Now: $1.70) is right in discussions for the Golden Slipper and rightfully so after his outstanding first up win in the Pierro Plate. Pulled hard in the run yet took control, pounced on the lead and dashed right away for a dominant win. The negative I have is the small field may mean a slow tempo. Just needs to relax.
All you can do is win and that is what 3 Sandbar (Bet Now: $8.50) has done for Brad Widdup, winning two of two, the latest coming three weeks back in the Lonhro Plate at Warwick Farm where Reith gave him a lovely sit just off the pace and pounced at the right time to cling on. Just a slight query at a strong 1200m, but beware the unbeaten horse.
Race 4. (14:15) Chandon S Sweet Embrace Stakes 1200m
7 Seabrook (Bet Now: $6.50) is a very smart filly for the Mick Price team who should take some beating here. This girl hasn’t raced since resuming in the Blue Diamond Prelude where you could make a case that she should have won but had no luck in the straight. 1200m on the big track looks an ideal set up and that form was franked in the Blue Diamond.
2 Fiesta (Bet Now: $4.40) is a Chris Waller trained filly who is assured a start in the Slipper. Just a matter of getting there in one piece. Resumed four weeks back in the Widden where she looked in a bit of trouble early on in the straight but she found plenty when challenged and eventually got clear to win impressively. 1200m looks no issue.
10 Sweet Ava (Bet Now: $18.00) is the big query here and somewhat of a forgotten horse when it comes to the Slipper picture. She debuted back in December at Canterbury over 1200m where she sat on speed most of the way under McEvoy and found plenty when challenged to get the win. Trial win last week was very good and she is one filly who has ticked the 1200m box.
Race 5. (14:50) Liverpool City Cup 1300m
3 Care To Think (Bet Now: $2.80) for me. He could be anything this horse. Absolutely anything, he’s that good. His efforts during the Brisbane Summer Carnival were that of a Group l winner in waiting and I think he will win a Group l eventually. Heading down the Doncaster path and looks ready to go off an outstanding trial last week at Rosehill.
7 Interlocuter (Bet Now: $8.50) is the big watch here. Quality Godolphin galloper resuming for James Cummings with this horse being set towards the Doncaster. Tried to get a free ticket via a win in the Villiers but got a mile back thanks to the brutal tempo when third to Crack Me Up. Trialled up nicely behind Music Magnate. Might need the run, but he has a stack of brilliance.
11 Artlee (Bet Now: $8.50) is the inaugural Country Championships winner who had his first run for the Kris Lees camp three weeks back at Warwick Farm where he was run off his legs, then got held up a touch late in what was a total forgive to my eye behind Fickle Folly, who was so brave last Saturday. That form reads well and up to 1300m on the bigger track…plenty of ticks.
Race 6. (15:30) TAB Chipping Norton Stakes 1600m
7 Winx… (Bet Now: $1.12 BOOSTED ODDS) need I say more? Well may as well. The champion mare is back for what could well be the campaign that settles the score once and for all that she’s the best in the world. Resuming at the mile isn’t the norm for her, but she was given a very solid hit out a fortnight back over 1200m when winning a trial here. She’s right to go.
4 Prized Icon (Bet Now: $21.00 BOOSTED ODDS) looks the obvious next pick. He’s flying at the moment for the Kris Lees camp. Resumed with a narrow second in the Carrington before going to the Apollo where he got back and just couldn’t wind up well enough when fourth to Endless Drama. Up to the mile looks ideal and draws a decent gate.
I think for wider multiples, I’d be chucking in 2 Who Shot Thebarman (Bet Now: $151.00 BOOSTED ODDS). This will be his fourth crack at this race and he has run well in this race in the past. Wasn’t asked to do much in the trial behind Winx but that is the norm with this bloke. Generally needs a couple of runs to find his best, but he can sprint well fresh.
Race 7. (16:10) James Boags Premium Surround Stakes 1400m
2 Alizee (Bet Now: $2.60) is a deserved favourite, but even money/odds on? Not for me. Great win in the Light Fingers first up, she was expected to win and got the job done. Was tiring late, but largely due to being out of condition and being in the inferior ground. She should come right on from that, hard to beat, on top…but too short.
I’m happy to have something on 4 Frolic (Bet Now: $11.00) each way, purely because, IMO, the price gap between herself and Alizee is far too great. She was first up for ten months when resuming in the Light Fingers and I thought her effort from the back was outstanding, closing off with real purpose late when beaten 1.9L by Alizee. Stack more upside with Frolic and she’ll eat up 1400m, like most engaged here. I can’t figure out the gap between the pair.
1 Shoals (Bet Now: $10.00) was very confidently backed when resuming in the Kevin Hayes at Caulfield three weeks back but a mixture of a poor ride and a flat run brought her undone. Trialled at Cranbourne last Monday and looked much better to my eye behind Lord Of The Sky. If the real Shoals turns up, she goes very close. Just not sure where she is at.
Race 8. (16:50) Guy Walter Proven Thoroughbreds Stakes 1400m
Happy to give 5 Raiment (Bet Now: $4.20) another look here. Had her on top in the Triscay a fortnight back and to my eye, she was out in time to be let down and win the race but I reckon condition just gave way late. The little bit of give in the track via the rain should help her ideally because I think she is a wet tracker, but even on top of the ground, I think she is effective.
Great to see 4 Dixie Blossoms (Bet Now: $3.20). She spaced them in this race last year, albeit on a bottomless track and walked them in front. She is bursting to win a Group l, and she kicks off that quest here. Very good fresh performer and there has been real intent in both trials, the latest seeing her beat Russian Revolution.
She’s eligible for midweekr races, but I think 11 Nettoyer (Bet Now: $81.00) is a really nice mare for the Wendy Roche team. As expected, completely unwanted in betting when resuming in the Breeders Classic three weeks back but I thought she stuck on really well behind Prompt Response. Does have a good record at Randwick and fitter. Doubt she wins, but I’d include in multiples.
Race 9. (17:30) Championship Hospitality Handicap (85) 1200m
15 Raiden (Bet Now: $7.00) for me. Kris Lees trains this promising four year old, who resumed a couple of Wednesdays back at Warwick Farm over 1000m where he was hard in the market and aided by a lovely ride from Avdulla, the son of Foxwedge finished best and won impressively against a handy bunch of sprinters. 1200m should suit him and he has a stack of upside.
3 Osborne Bulls (Bet Now: $3.20) is the big watch. Exciting James Cummings trained galloper who was due to resume here a fortnight back but played up in the gates and was a late scratching. The trial leading in was outstanding, he looks ready to go…my worry with him is that he only brings midweek form. Is the short quote warranted?
5 Pick Me Up (Bet Now: $21.00) is a handy son of Encosta De Lago that resumes for the Tim Martin camp. This bloke was a drifter in betting when contesting an Evening Star race at Canterbury back in December and didn’t have the best of luck in the straight behind Invincible Quest. He does go well fresh and despite no trials, I reckon he’ll be near wound up to go.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Nine Number 15 Raiden
NEXT BEST: Race Five Number 3 Care To Think
VALUE: Race Two Number 12 Tamarack
Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):
Leg One: 7
Leg Two: 1, 2, 3, 4
Leg Three: 4, 5, 7, 10, 11
Leg Four: 3, 5, 14, 15
$50 Investment= 62.50% of the dividend if successful
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