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It’s Finals Day at Flemington Saturday with nine races full of quality with some winners to be found, hopefully with a dash of value. The weather is overcast, the track is good (4) and the rail is in the true position for the entire circuit.

Race 1. (11:45) Rivette Series Final 1600m

Back Me

4 Ruby Sea (Bet Now: $2.60) looks a good thing to my eye here. Very promising filly for the Ciaron Maher who has been given a tick over three weeks off since bolting up at Sandown where she was heavily backed in betting and ran right on with it, aided by a lovely steer from Luke Nolen. Flemington mile third up looks ideal and she should take some beating.

Danger

The blinkers have really done the trick with 5 River Goddess (Bet Now: $8.50). Ran really well in defeat behind Ruby Sea in that race mentioned above before going to the Provincials at Ballarat where she was far too classy against the older horses and spanked them. If she can overcome the tricky draw, she’s right in this.

Long Shot

2 Hussy’s Glow (Bet Now: $13.00) did a really good job in defeat last Wednesday at Sandown. This Patrick Payne trained filly got a mile back off them in the run, and really just gave away too much of a start but she was a real eye catcher. Provided she doesn’t give away that big of a start here, I think she can measure up.

Race 2. (12:20) VRC-CRV Cup Tour Trophy 2000m

Back Me

1 Killarney Kid (Bet Now: $3.50) to be getting close to peak fitness. His three runs back from a break have been very good, the latest coming over the Valley mile when flashing home to run a close up fifth to Petrology. Has since been tuned up with a sharp win over the hurdles at the Bool. Really keen on him back in this grade.

Danger

8 Hot Ruby (Bet Now: $10.00) was given a somewhat strange ride by Beau Mertens in the Provincial Plate here a fortnight back over the mile. He seemed to wait an eternity to get stuck in her and by the time he did, the bird was off and gone for the prize. Good record at 2000m and she is in ripping form, so she ticks a few boxes.

Long Shot

Pace looks a bit non existent so a horse like 4 Lord Durante (Bet Now: $11.00) comes into play. Grand campaigner who doesn’t mind a dry spell, but his effort last Saturday over 1800m at Caulfield behind Radipole was quite encouraging where he sat near the speed and fought on strongly. Maps very well here and any rain won’t harm his chances.

Race 3. (12:55) Leilani Series Final 1400m

Back Me

2 A Lotta Love (Bet Now: $6.00) is on the quick back up for the Pritchard-Gordon camp after racing over 1200m at Caulfield last Saturday where it is best to just forget she went around. Dragged back to last from the inside gate in a slowly run affair..yep, recipe for disaster and so it proved. Last time she was at the Flemington 1400m was on Cup when a 0.9L fourth to Artistry. Good enough for me.

Danger

1 Tsaritsa (Bet Now: $5.00) had been off the boil for Chris Waller for some time so it was good to see her bounce back to some sort of form at this track/distance two weeks back when running a game second with the big weight behind Schism. Gets really good weight relief here and she has class on her side.

Long Shot

9 Movie (Bet Now: $10.00) could be a knockout horse here at odds. Market said she had three legs first up at Pakenham and ran accordingly. She then went to the Geelong Synthetic and it was just a nightmare watch. Got dragged back behind tired runners and never really got a clear crack. Better than that and comes to town. Must include in exotics.

Race 4. (13:30) Taj Rossi Series Final 1600m

Back Me

1 Royal Symphony (Bet Now: $1.45) just picks himself here. High quality colt for the Tony McEvoy yard who won like a star a fortnight back over 1400m here, charging from the back and sprinting right away from his rivals to win with plenty in hand. 1600m is no issue and only bad luck will beat him here.

Danger

9 Anchor Bid (Bet Now: $11.00) comes through the Levendi race at Ballarat and closed off really nicely to run third. She then went to the Royal Symphony race and just got back/held up. Wouldn’t have threatened the winner, but definitely should have finished closer. She will eat up the mile here and is a knockout chance if the top tip is off his game.

Long Shot

8 Hard Ruler (Bet Now: $46.00) was solid first up at Ballarat behind Levendi before going to Sale where she looked in a bit of trouble early in the straight but Oliver lifted her late and she was strong to the line in winning. She does have the hard mile run under the belt, and she did show there she will attack the line at the end.

Race 5. (14:10) AR Creswick Series Final 1200m

Back Me

6 Sacred Sham (Bet Now: $10.00) is a beauty for the Danny O’Brien camp. He ran over 1100m at Flemington a fortnight back and I thought his effort was great. Got caught nearer the inside section, which was clearly not the spot to be, but I really liked the way he stuck on behind Overstep. Up to 1200m is ideal and he’s in form.

Danger

3 Overstep (Bet Now: $4.40) is a really consistent filly for the Waller camp who is proven down the straight and is a live threat obviously. She won that race mentioned above and it was down to a lovely steer from Froggy, who got her off the pace before getting clear air and savaging the line late to win. Hard to beat.

Long Shot

12 Mystified (Bet Now: $9.50) is the knockout horse. Ryan Balfour trained filly who has been very good without luck in recent times at the Valley, getting back/wide but finishing off with purpose. I think the straight track will suit her nicely and if the speed is on, I think she is capable of launching late.

Race 6. (14:50) Banjo Paterson Series Final 2600m

Back Me

4 Charlevoix (Bet Now: $3.50) has found his best form now with the Hayes/Dabernig camp. He ran over 2500m here a fortnight back and it was thanks to a lovely ride from Craig Williams that got him home narrowly but impressively. 2600m will suit him nicely, but the weight rise may be an issue.

Danger

5 Hursley (Bet Now: $5.50) was given every chance by Stackhouse in the Charlevoix race here two weeks ago and he tried very hard, as he so often does, but just foudn Charlevoix too tough/strong. That does leave me thinking that 2600m will be an ask, as well as the weight rise, but he’s hard fit/in form.

Long Shot

I’m going to give me old mate 12 Granddukeoftuscany (Bet Now: $8.00) another look here. His last couple of efforts have come at Sandown and a couple of times he has been ridden poorly. Thought Olly gave him every chance last Wednesday but he was very one paced to the line. Would love to see him lead and roll along. If that does happen, he’ll take some beating.

Race 7. (15:30) VRC CRV Winter Championship Series Final 1600m

Back Me

11 Victory Downs (Bet Now: $13.00) is a talented SA galloper who deserves a crack at the big smoke after a dominant win in the Swan Hill Cup last time out where he was heavily backed late in the race and the punters got it spot on as he charged home from off the pace to get the job done. Gets really good weight relief and I think he can measure up.

Danger

I think you have to include 6 Petrology (Bet Now: $12.00). Yes, it is Petrology, but he has really turned the corner this time in. He is more genuine and he is hitting the line with purpose, with the key clearly being Cory Parish, who is one of the best riders in Australia, not just Victoria IMHO. This horse loves Flemington and he draws beautifully.

Long Shot

Looks to be good speed engaged here so I think a horse like 1 Amovatio (Bet Now: $5.50) can potentially bounce back hard. Overall, he’s been a bit disappointing this time in, but we know he has a fab record at Flemington and when Oliver combines with Waller horses, they are a tough combo to beat, and did have success in this race previously with Abbasso.

Race 8. (16:10) All Victorian Sprint Series Final 1200m

Back Me

7 Ability (Bet Now: $2.90) for me here. This Robert Smerdon trained galloper has really turned the corner since being gelded, winning two of two, the latest coming over 1100m here where he looked as if he wasn’t going to beat Husson Eagle but he lunged hard late to get the win. Wouldn’t say overhauling that horse is a feather in the cap, but I think he’ll get the 1200m.

Danger

1 Tashbeeh (Bet Now: $7.50) is first up after a near seven week break where he resumed in the Straight Six at this track/distance where he sat near the speed and dashed right away under Jordan Childs for a dominant win. Got a really good record at Flemington and despite the weight, he is the class runner.

Long Shot

6 Rough Justice (Bet Now: $10.00) is a beauty for the Ellerton/Zahra camp. His two runs this time in have come down the straight and each time he has been very good, the latest behind Ability when sitting on speed and being bloused late. On weights, he probably can’t turn the tables, but he draws the right part of the track and loves the straight course.

Race 9. (16:45) Silver Bowl Series Final 1600m

Back Me

1 Urban Ruler (Bet Now: $4.00) looks the one to beat here. Greg Eurell trained gelding who ran over this track/distance a fortnight back and I thought his effort from where he was with the weight was unbelievable and was huge in getting as close as he did to Thaad. Would love to see them push forward to sit closer in the run. If that eventuates, he’s the one.

Danger

5 Cannot Be Serios (Bet Now: $6.00) is on the seven day back up for the Freedman camp after racing over 1400m at Caulfield last Saturday where I thought he was very good late in the race behind My Paisann. Go back to last prep in Sydney and over 1550m at Canterbury he beat the low flying Cosmic Engine and the talented Arbeitsam. Good enough for me here to include.

Long Shot

14 First Approach (Bet Now: $11.00) comes through a 3YO race over 1400m at Bendigo a tick over two weeks back where he looked to travel well with three wide cover and once Yendall presented him, he took an eternity to get going but worked home very nicely late. That tells me he will get the mile here and he has the Weir polish.

Best Bets & Quaddie Tips

BEST BET: Race Four Number 1 Royal Symphony

NEXT BEST: Race Eight Number 7 Ability

VALUE: Race Seven Number 11 Victory Downs

 

Quaddie Tips (Races Six Through To Nine):

Leg One: 4, 5, 7, 8, 12

Leg Two: 1, 6, 8, 11, 15

Leg Three: 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8

Leg Four: 1, 4, 5, 6, 14

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