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The Ascot Autumn Carnival continues this Saturday where it is WA Oaks Day. The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.

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Race 1. (15:18) Belmont City Of Opportunity Maiden 1100m

Back Me

15 Advocator (Bet Now: $9.00) looks a handy galloper for Fred Kersley who can run well. Was totally unwanted in betting when debuting here on Feb 27 where she got well back in the run near the rail and was building the revs nicely before getting stopped in her tracks when fifth, where she probably runs third with clear air. Bit of depth to this maiden, but happy to give her a chance.

Danger

13 Ribbon Of Gold (Bet Now: $4.00) is a Dan Morton trained filly who resumed down the straight at Pinjarra where she looked to travel well under Johnston-Porter and kept finding but the eventual winner, Over There, was far too good. Think she’ll take good improvement from the race and despite drawing wide, I think she’s a leading contender. Just needs cover from the barrier.

Long Shot

5 Wakan Tanka (Bet Now: $7.00) is a son of Playing God for Neville Parnham who comes through the Over There race mentioned above where he found the outside rail, which is usually the spot to be, and he was okay but well held I thought in running fourth. Should be able to get decent cover from the barrier and only had one soft trial leading in, so perhaps there is improvement.

Race 2. (15:58) Tabtouch Better Your Bet Plate 1000m

Back Me

7 Marcee A Lady (Bet Now: $4.00) is a Simon Miller trained filly that is third up from a spell, so she should be hard fit. She comes through the Spacegirl race from a fortnight back where she just got too far back in the run but did make up ground late and was quite good. Can sit much closer in the run from gate one and is a definite winning chance in a thin juvenile race.

Danger

1 Downforce (Bet Now: $4.40) is a Neville Parnham trained juvenile that had the suck run in the Spacegirl race from two weeks ago, getting the box seat sit and did get the dream gap at the top of the straight. Just couldn’t quite finish it off when third but was solid enough on the line. Stable is having an okay run at the moment and no shock to see this youngster improve enough to win.

Long Shot

3 Warfish (Bet Now: $10.00) is a Sean Casey trained gelding who debuted at the midweeks here on March 13 off the back of a couple of trials and I thought his run was excellent first up, sitting on a pretty hot speed and the leader dropped out badly while he was there fighting, with those sitting in behind proving too good. Has the speed to be near the front and with that run under the belt, he should be better off.

Race 3. (16:38) Schweppes Handicap 1400m

Back Me

Happy to butter up on 2 Cup Night (Bet Now: $2.60). Few of these come through a 1200m race here from two weeks ago where he was a pretty dominant winner despite sitting wide no cover for the second half of the race. He was asked for the effort and responded quite well, safely holding his rivals at bay. Can only see improvement off that and prove hard to beat.

Danger

7 Henty Gal (Bet Now: $6.00) is a Michael Lane trained filly who put together a couple of wins on the bounce before going to the Cup Night race from two weeks ago where she got back to near last in the run before easing to the outside and finishing off nicely to run second to Cup Night. With a cold ride, I think 1400m will be okay for her and the stable is having a really good run at the moment.

Long Shot

10 Lookout (Bet Now: $12.00) had really good specking in the Cup Night race two weeks back and he was a bit unlucky not to finish closer. Was looking to build the revs but got held up when having something to offer. Got clear and finished off strongly. 1400m should be ideal for him and with clear air this time around, I think he could well be a knockout chance at decent odds.

Race 4. (17:14) Amelia Park Handicap (1MW) 1800m

Back Me

16 Strong Heart (Bet Now: $4.20) is a progressive son of Reset for the Williams camp who is building a decent record. A Pike special got him the win two back over 2000m at Bunbury before stepping back in trip to the mile where he took an eternity to wind up but was good late behind You Am I. Back up to 1800m and onto the bigger track, I think he can bounce back and be a sneaky Derby chance.

Danger

10 Rebel Knight (Bet Now: $2.90) is two weeks between runs after racing over the mile here last time out and did a ripping job in defeat I thought, closing off with real purpose off a moderate tempo when third to Yeah Bravo, beaten narrowly. Did want to lay in that day, so if he does everything right this time around, I think he’ll take a power of beating against this lot.

Long Shot

6 Beaucount (Bet Now: $13.00) is a Brad Graham trained stayer who likely lands in front and gives them something to chase as he usually does when he gets to this distance range. Ran over 2100m last Saturday where he did his thing in front, running at a solid tempo and gave a kick but just tired late. Think back to 1800m, he’ll likely lead and give them something to chase.

Race 5. (17:50) Kirin Megumi Handicap (64+) 1200m

Back Me

Keen to see 12 Special Reward (Bet Now: $3.70), who is resuming for Simon Miller. This three year old had two runs in the Spring, including the Belgravia when down the track behind Mystery Miss. Been given a good break and her Belmont trial win last Monday was one of the standout performances of the morning. Happy to take a chance on him first up against the older horses.

Danger

3 Little Fish (Bet Now: $8.50) is a Peter Fernie trained gelding who hasn’t raced for three weeks, last racing over this track/distance when overcoming the track bias and scoring a pretty dominant win. He was too good for them at Kalgoorlie and since coming to town, he’s measured up and done it comfortably. See no reason why he can’t win other than a tricky draw.

Long Shot

8 Cuanzo (Bet Now: $19.00) could add some value to exotics for the Lou Luciani stable. Four weeks ago ran at this track/distance where he got back to near last in the run before Pike presented him to the outside and he found the line okay late behind Santiago Gal. Seems to be better when produced on the fresh side and with good speed in front, he could be finishing off well late.

Race 6. (18:25) Seppelt Wines Handicap (76+) 1200m

Back Me

10 Pym’s Royale (Bet Now: $2.45) on top, just. Peter Fernie trains this above average son of Husson, who is three weeks between runs after producing an outstanding finale from off the pace to score such an impressive win. Was coming back in trip that afternoon so back up to 1200m will be perfect and can sit near the speed with the better barrier. Happy to be in his corner.

Danger

He’s racing very well is 5 River Dance…(Bet Now: $4.50) just can’t quite crack it for a win at the moment. Given every chance by Shooter last time out here but couldn’t withstand the finale of Dam Ready. Actually meets that horse 1kg worse off here, but McGruddy does stick, gate one…plenty going for him. Just needs to put a win on the board and until them, happy to watch than back.

Long Shot

12 Settlers Creek (Bet Now: $31.00) is a Colin Webster trained veteran resuming. This bloke hasn’t raced since September 29 when down the track in an okay race at Belmont. Has had three trials in readiness for his return and each time he has looked decent. Troy Turner gets on really well with the horse and can pull out a decent run fresh. Certainly one to chuck in exotics.

Race 7. (19:05) Melvista Stakes 2200m

Back Me

The key chances raced here a fortnight ago, the race won by 1 Platoon (Bet Now: $4.20) and really, I’m not sure how they turn the tables on him. Admittedly it was a solidly run race, but he did sit wide (with cover) for the second half of the race and was forced very wide on the turn, but he let down powerfully and put the race to bed in a couple of strides, comfortably holding Regal Power, who had the suck run in behind and did no work. Really keen on this Neville Parnham galloper.

Danger

That’s not to say that 2 Regal Power (Bet Now: $1.85) can’t win the race because W Pike is steering, but IMO, he will need to improve a fair bit. That run two weeks ago, he was given every chance in the run and the splits came at the right time. Platoon was just too good and if you’re a Regal Power, the worry is that Platoon was holding him comfortably. But, in the right stable with the rider jockey.

Long Shot

5 Classic Jack (Bet Now: $101.00) is a horse I haven’t entirely given up on from a Derby perspective. Wanted to see him do something positive last time out and he did so behind Platoon, finding the line okay, clocking the the third fastest final furlong behind the first two. He’s working up nicely to a Derby I suspect and is now getting out to a trip. He can run a much improved race again.

Race 8. (19:40) WA Oaks 2400m

Back Me

Normal luck and I think 11 Dark Choice (Bet Now: $4.20) will be far too good for this field. She’s the filly with just so much upside compared to this lot and appears to be heading in the right direction. Clearly the unlucky runner in the Natasha, sitting back and held up with plenty to offer and savaged the line late. 2400m looks perfect and clear air this, she should be too good.

Danger

1 Assetro (Bet Now: $4.20) is racing so well at the moment, but can’t quite crack it for a win. She made a sustained run in the Natasha last time and was there to win 200m but that hard run she had to make just told on her late and she tired to run third. She’s capable of winning this but will need a few things to go in her favour. Think the trip will be okay provided she doesn’t have to make a run like last time.

Long Shot

9 Vinaceous (Bet Now: $27.00) could be an improver at odds from the Natasha. She got a mile out of her ground in the race, an event where they didn’t seem to go overly hard in so her task was made a bit difficult but she did make ground and her run wasn’t too bad. 2400m should be fine for her…not sure she has the class of Dark Choice, but in the right stable and is a value chance.

Race 9. (20:15) Let's Celebrate City Of Belmont Handicap (70+) 1600m

Back Me

Happy to side with 13 Arctic Stream (Bet Now: $3.60) for Ross Price. Resumed at this track/distance two weeks ago where Pike nearly weaved his wand to success but just found Special Delivery too good, with the margin being narrow. Has room to improve, plenty of room…remaining at the mile is the concern, but the resumption was just too good to ignore for this.

Danger

9 Midnight Sky (Bet Now: $4.00) is on the seven day back up for Adam Durrant after racing over 1500m here last Saturday where I thought the Parnham steer was a large factor to the win. Saved ground, made the right moves and was strong late, so the 1600m should be fine for her and though Parnham is a very good rider, Pike jumping on is a big tick for this girl.

Long Shot

8 Touch Of Silver (Bet Now: $7.50) comes through the Special Delivery race from two weeks ago where he was wide all the way, and forced five wide on the turn. Entitled to drop out but kept finding and was far from disgraced behind the Bairstow galloper. Draws to do no work in the run and should just about be hard fit now. Needs to improve but no reason to suggest he can’t.

Best Bets & Quaddie Tips

BEST BET: Race Eight Number 11 Dark Choice

NEXT BEST: Race Seven Number 1 Platoon

LONG SHOT: Race One Number 15 Advocator

 

Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):

Leg One: 1, 5, 10, 12

Leg Two: 1

Leg Three: 11

Leg Four: 2, 5, 8, 9, 13

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