The best day of racing in Queensland is Stradbroke Day and the 2019 edition comes around this Saturday at Eagle Farm. The weather is fine, the track is good (4) and the rail is out two metres for the entire circuit.
Race 1. (11:10) Daybreak Lover 1200m
Have to believe what I’ve seen when it comes to 7 Ready To Prophet (Bet Now: $7.00 TOP ODDS). Outstanding first up winner of the Denises Joy during the Scone Carnival before taking on the older mares at Randwick where she sat on a brutal speed and was the lone survivor of that in a brilliant effort when second to Charlayne. She can get over and lead these comfortably and if that eventuates, she’ll take a power of beating. Just hope last start hasn’t busted her.
1 Plague Stone (Bet Now: $2.50 TOP ODDS) has really turned the corner since being gelded. Pushed Zoustyle at Doomben in the JRA Plate before going to the Lightning last Saturday where he sat off a very fast speed before Larry Cassidy eased him wider on the turn and he was pretty much always in control of the race, holding a safe margin to the line. He’ll run well again I’m sure.
I know Michael Costa has always had time for 9 Malahide (Bet Now: $26.00 TOP ODDS) so interesting to see what she does here. Was very confidently supported when resuming at the midweeks at Ipswich when charging home from off the pace to score a sharp win. She’s always shown promise but for the most part hasn’t quite lived up to it. Not sure she wins here, but a must for multiples.
Race 2. (11:45) Dane Ripper Stakes 1400m
Hoping class comes to the fore via 1 Prompt Response (Bet Now: $7.00 TOP ODDS). She just had far too much to do in the Kingsford Smith in a race and meeting dominated by those near the front/rail. She had no chance but her run wasn’t too bad all things being equal. Blake Shinn back aboard, can see her pinging the lids, sitting on speed and proving very hard to beat.
6 Con Te Partiro (Bet Now: $4.00 TOP ODDS) a definite threat for me. The WaterBott stable trains this mare, who made her Australian debut in the Dark Jewel during the Scone Carnival where she looked gone 200m out but she kept finding under Clipperton and surged again between runners to score a remarkable win. Was hoping to get into the Stradroke field but instead runs here en route to the Tiara and should take some beating.
I’m wary of 2 Invincibella (Bet Now: $13.00 TOP ODDS) for Chris Waller. She comes through the Glenlogan Park where the bias certainly didn’t help her cause but at the same time, I thought it was just a run behind Savatiano. She’s third up here, so she should just about be ready fitness wise and at her best, she’s clearly up to beating these but this is almost D-Day for to see if she’s a contender or pretender re Tatts Tiara.
Race 3. (12:20) The Wayne Wilson 1600m
Going the way of the James Cummings trained 3 Duca Valentinois (Bet Now: $13.00 TOP ODDS). He’s been quite good in three runs back from a break, the latest in the Lord Mayors Cup a fortnight ago where he had to navigate the bias, which pretty much sealed his fate, but his run still had plenty of merit to it behind Order Again. If the track is playing fairly, he’ll take some beating here.
He’s a quirky animal is 2 Order Again (Bet Now: $6.00 TOP ODDS) but no denying the talent is there under the hood and he got things to fall into place perfectly in the Lord Mayors Cup two weeks ago, getting the suck run nearer the inside before getting the gaps to dash through and that turn of foot we know he has came to the fore to nail Tom Melbourne. Just needs to do it again before he can be trusted.
1 Salsonic (Bet Now: $31.00 TOP ODDS) is going really well at the moment for Jason Coyle. He had to take use of the inside gate in the Lord Mayors Cup even though it was against his race pattern, but he stuck on and was game in defeat when fourth to Order Again. He does race best when flopping out the back off a good speed, peeling wide and ambushing late. If that set up eventuates, he can win for sure.
Race 4. (12:55) Makers Mark Hinkler Handicap 1200m
Looking at this race with Deprive out. Have to be with 10 Noble Boy (Bet Now: $2.40 TOP ODDS) but this will be a great race. Todd Blowes has done an outstanding job with this horse, winning the Country Championships Final before being freshened up and racing over this track/distance two weeks ago where he surged through the gaps under J Mac and he won with real class, and seemingly with plenty in hand, as Blowes had said post race. He’s got improvement to come and appears really well placed.
Bit unfortunate that 4 Victorem (Bet Now: $6.00 TOP ODDS) didn’t get a run in the Stradbroke, likewise with Noble Boy, because I think both would have run well. Victorem comes through the Kingsford-Smith where he was wide throughout and chasing, which isn’t his go, especially first time at WFA, so for mine, he was a total forgive. Back in depth and back to 1200m will be perfect for him and is hard to beat.
Have to give 14 In Good Time (Bet Now: $20.00 TOP ODDS) another look. Gee she’s been luckless at her past two. Should have won the Chief De Beers two back before racing in the Lightning last Saturday where she was again held up when seemingly full of running behind Plague Stone. Draws out, so hopefully gets clear air this time around to let down and see just how good she’s going.
Race 5. (13:35) Queensland Guineas 1600m
Want to be very forgiving of 14 Pohutukawa (Bet Now: $6.00) from the Fred Best. Talented filly for James Cummings who was ridden like she was in a barrier trial, flopping out to near last from the wide gate and was never really a winning threat, but she didn’t get much luck in the straight when seemingly having something to offer. Fitter and up to the mile, she certainly appeals.
5 Kolding (Bet Now: $2.20) has really turned his career around since being gelded. Admittedly the last couple of runs/wins he’s had the beaut sit just off the speed, but the good thing is that he’s taken advantage of that and spanked his rivals each time, winning with class and authority, earning him a trip to Brisbane for this Group ll to see just how good he’s going. I’m trusting what I’ve seen.
David Vandyke pulled the right rein when bypassing the Oaks with 15 Baccarat Baby (Bet Now: $17.00) because she just isn’t a stayer and is better suited at 1400m-1600m. Ran in the Fred Best two weeks ago when back in the run and finishing off nicely to run second to the in form Snowden three year old Military Zone. She’ll eat up the mile here and does have a touch of class.
Race 6. (14:15) JJ Atkins Plate 1600m
Struggling to see anything other than a win for 7 Prince Fawaz (Bet Now: $3.90). Closed off strongly in the highest rating 2YO race of the season, the Champagne, behind Castelvecchio, who comfortably beat Accession earlier in the season. Prince Fawaz beat Reloaded at Randwick, with Reloaded beating horses who finished behind Accession and Strasbourg in the BRC Sires Produce. He’s remained at 1400m twice since the Champagne but now will step up to the mile in the JJ Atkins and the way he’s racing, he’ll eat up the mile on the big track and does have the A1 form IMO.
2 Strasbourg (Bet Now: $5.00) was outstanding in winning the BRC Sires Produce, helped by the ride of the day from Tommy Berry. Showed initiative by getting going before the turn to have the horse at full momentum while the key rival Accession was blocked away. Visually, the run of Accession look the better JJ Atkins lead up, but bear in mind Strasbourg did get going early and was entitled to knock up. He’s right in this.
It’s hard to get a read on the Chris Waller trained 6 Kubrick (Bet Now: $11.00). He’s 2/2 to start his career. Loved the way he attacked the line to win on debut under the lights at Cranbourne before going to Rosehill where the depth didn’t appear overly strong but once again he finished best in a tight go. Trialled last week at Randwick and was good without jumping up and down. In the right stable though and has to be respected.
Race 7. (14:55) Queensland Derby 2400m
It’s a rather weak Queensland Derby IMO and there is a tail to the race. I think the non Brisbane form is the way to go here and have to be impressed by the way that 6 Nobu (Bet Now: $4.40) has been going since a failed NZ Derby campaign. Spanked them two back over 1800m on the Kenso track before going to the Randwick 2000m where he looked in a bit of trouble early on in the straight as Carif was bolting clear, but that horse half turned it up and Nobu knuckled down strongly to win. 2400m should be okay for him, he’s in form, in the right stable. He’s one of the safer options.
I’m very wary of 2 Mr Quickie (Bet Now: $4.50) for Phillip Stokes. He has been kept on ice since the SA Derby where he just got a mile back in an on pace dominated affair and had no hope of winning but was outstanding in defeat behind Qafila. Stokes is no mug and he could have easily tipped this horse out for a spell after, but has done well since and this horse does have a turn of foot.
4 Declares War (Bet Now: $17.00) is a Matt Cumani trained three year old who was over three weeks between runs when getting the job done over 2000m at Flemington last time out under a lovely steer from an in from Jye McNeil. He had a good battle with Igniter but the photo went his way in a close finish. Has room to improve I dare say and is clearly hard to beat, especially from the draw with Willow steering.
Race 8. (15:35) Stradbroke Handicap 1400m
Enormous respect to 5 Trekking (Bet Now: $7.00). He put together a couple of sharp wins in the Hall Mark and Luskin Star respectively before going to the Kingsford Smith where he couldn’t quite take advantage of the inside gate, settling a pair further back than perhaps anticipated and you can make a case it cost him the win behind The Bostonian. Query at 1400m, but hard to knock the way he’s going.
No horse has done the 10,000-Kingsford Smith-Stradbroke treble but I think 1 The Bostonian (Bet Now: $5.50) can create some history. He seems to save his best for Queensland and has been outstanding recently, winning the 10,000 and Kingsford Smith impressively, helped by a couple of peach steers from Michael Cahill. Slow learner, but am realising that weights/measures aren’t everything and sometimes you just can’t ignore a horse/jock combo in the zone, and that is what is happening here.
John O’Shea is no stranger to winning the Stradbroke with 3YO filly and his girl 18 Pretty In Pink (Bet Now: $13.00) is a live chance here. Admittedly the breaks and luck went her way to win the Moreton Cup last Saturday, but bear in mind she was only second up and not easing beating the older boys and girls who have had hard fitness under the belt. Does no work from the draw and with only 49.5kg on her back, she’s a definite threat.
Race 9. (16:15) Brisbane Cup 2400m
He’s been very good to me this prep has 4 Grey Lion (Bet Now: $7.00) and I won’t be jumping off. Lovely ride from Kathy O’Hara got him home impressively in the JRA Plate two back at Randwick before going to the Lord Mayors Cup where he chased a hot speed and was there to be beaten but found plenty late to get the job done. Once again has trialled between runs and once again, looked outstanding. Hardest test to date here for the prep, but confident he can measure up.
He’s been the form horse of the Brisbane Winter has 7 The Candy Man (Bet Now: $4.40) and confident he can run well once again. Has won 5/5 this time in, the latest coming two weeks back in the Premiers Cup when chasing the speed and despite being helped by bias, he was too good for his rivals. Looks as if the 2400m will be no issue, he’s hard fit and is absolutely flying.
Want to be forgiving of 13 Our Libretto (Bet Now: $21.00) and her Premiers Cup failure. She was back and wide throughout in a race and meeting dominated by those near the speed/rail and she really had no hope, but she actually hit the line okay behind The Candy Man. If the track is playing fairly, and if you go on her form prior to that, she’s right in the game for sure.
Best Bets & Quaddie Tips
BEST BET: Race Six Number 7 Prince Fawaz
NEXT BEST: Race Four Number 10 Noble Boy
LONG SHOT: Race Nine Number 4 Grey Lion
Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):
Leg One: 7
Leg Two: 2, 4, 6, 8, 15
Leg Three: 1, 5, 15, 18
Leg Four: 3, 4, 7, 13
$50 Investment = 62.50% of the dividend if successful
All odds are subject to change. Odds listed are correct at the time of the latest update.
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