By Ray Hickson
Ray Hickson’s tips and insights for Wednesday’s Canterbury Park meeting. Race seven is a cracker on what is another handy midweek card. The track will be Good and the rail is out 3m.
|Race 1 – 1:15PM SCHWEPPES PLATE (1250 METRES)|
Interesting race despite the five horse field and I’ve gone with the exposed form of the four that have raced. 2. Kookabaa hasn’t had a lot of luck in two runs back from a spell and he’s still been close up at the finish. Bailed up behind them first-up then had to work pretty hard on the pace and was still in front at the 100m before being swamped. If he has a bit more fortune he’s a good chance.
Dangers: 4. Poetic Charmer seemed to have his chance when resuming at Rosehill but he did close off nicely late, suggesting the 1250m will be right up his alley. Decent threat. 6. Unforgotten has some strong formlines through her two starts, the latest a closing second to Ace High in a Kembla maiden in July. May want further but could have the most upside. 1. Epic Rant failed badly as a short priced favourite first-up. He has to be better than that so some improvement wouldn’t surprise.
How to play it: Quinella Kookabaa and Poetic Charmer.
Kookabaa’s last start fourth at Warwick Farm – October 2
|Race 2 - 1:50PM ALL TOO HARD@VINERY HANDICAP (1100 METRES)|
Somewhat keen on the chances of Impending’s full sister 7. Epidemic who is a whole lot better than her race form would suggest she is. No luck on debut behind Champagne Cuddles though did disappoint at Listed level at Scone. But there was so much to like about her trial win at Rosehill earlier this month and back to a maiden she’s entitled to be in the finish.
Dangers: 1. Highly Influential has trialled up well on two occasions at Randwick on September. He was a late scratching from Warwick Farm last Wednesday due to transport difficulties. If he runs up to his trials he’s a genuine chance. 2. Kettering attacked the line strongly first-up at Muswellbrook and there was a big gap to third in that race. Smaller field, perhaps a lot more quality, and is worth including in the hopes.
How to play it: Epidemic WIN ($2.60 TAB Fixed Odds).
Epidemic’s impressive trial win at Rosehill – October 3
|Race 3 - 2:25PM MCGRATH ESTATE AGENTS QLD HANDICAP (1550 METRES)|
A mini D-Day for 3. I Am Serious who has been beaten favourite in her two runs for Chris Waller and should have no excuses this time around. Has drawn out in both those races, was a bit lost first-up then ran into all sorts of trouble at a vital stage off a five week break at Warwick Farm on October 2. Up another 150m, drawn ideally and has every chance to break through this time.
Dangers: 1. Princess Posh comes through the same race where she finished second and had her chance after a nice run. Meets I Am Serious 1kg better after the claim and is sure to be in the finish. 2. Sisken ran fourth in the same event after sitting on the speed and battling away. It was a month between runs for her so she may be fitter and is worth another chance.
How to play it: I Am Serious WIN ($2.30 TAB Fixed Odds).
I Am Serious is a shade unlucky running third at Warwick Farm – October 2
|Race 4 - 3:10PM MCGRATH ESTATE AGENTS NSW HANDICAP (1550 METRES)|
I’m not super keen on the short price but kept coming back to 1. Stonebrook who is unbeaten in three starts to date. Obviously has top weight and gate nine of 10 but the good thing is he will go forward and probably lands outside the leader at very worst. Under those circumstances he shouldn’t have to work too hard and that’s important as he’s up 300m on his win two weeks ago. The one to beat but I’m a bit concerned.
Dangers: 2. Kilmacurragh has had all 10 starts in Victoria and being an on pace runner he’s a chance of leading or making Stonebrook work. Outclassed in the JRA Cup behind the liks of Jon Snow at the Valley but his form prior to that was solid enough in this sort of class. 3. Calypso Bay was only fair second-up but gets his chance to fire up with the benefit of an easy run in transit. How to play it: Quinella Stonebrook and Kilmacurragh.
Stonebrook leads all the way to win at Canterbury – October 4
|Race 5 - 3:35PM TAB.COM.AU HANDICAP (1250 METRES)|
Playing the percentages a bit here with on speed runner 8. Cedarwood who tried very hard to run down Za Zi Ba here two weeks ago and didn’t miss by a lot. Has the soft run from barrier two where he can hold his spot or take the box seat and that extra 50m could be very handy for him. In an open race he looks the one to beat though I wouldn’t want to be taking a lot shorter than his current quote.
Dangers: 7. Star Of Africa was solid in betting on debut and proved a bit too strong at the Farm a month ago. Not sure where he gets to from the wide gate but not a lot stronger here and with even luck can go close. 4. The Cheetah looked to have his chance first-up at Gosford but the blinkers go on and he’ll hold a forward spot from the inside alley. Up to putting himself in the finish of this and 3. Ruthless Agent is worth including in the chances.
How to play it: Cedarwood WIN ($3.30 TAB Fixed Odds)
Cedarwood’s close second at Canterbury – October 4
|Race 6 - 4:10PM MCGRATH ESTATE AGENTS ACT HANDICAP (1900 METRES)|
9. Baysa had the flashing light on when she resumed with a super second at Rosehill, failing by the barest margin over 1500m after being slow out and running on from last. Definitely suited by the step to 1900m and she finished midfield in Egg Tart’s Queensland Oaks in June. Only concern is Canterbury but she has a soft gate and Brenton Avdulla should suit her too. Have to be with her.
Dangers: 3. Lead Choreographer won well first-up then bumped into Black On Gold at the Farm finishing second as favourite. Placed over this course back in May and may have lost that fresh edge last time so the trip will suit. If he’s a chance then 2. Karavali is also a huge threat. She made plenty of ground from a clear last on the turn in the same race and ran Lead Choreographer to a head or so. Also including 1. Tenorino back in class on his last couple.
How to play it: Baysa WIN ($2.90 TAB Fixed Odds).
Baysa’s close second when resuming at Rosehill – September 27
|Race 7 - 4:50PM #THERACES HANDICAP (1250 METRES)|
The race of the day by a fair margin. Settled on 1. Osborne Bulls who won his first three starts out of town then loomed up to beat Invincibella at Rosehill before just weakening in the last 100m. That form is obviously very strong and he comes down a notch in grade with a perfect draw. This race is no gimme but if he can run up to that last performance then he’s very hard to beat.
Dangers: Very frightened of 10. Slow Burn after she ran right up to her trial win with a strong on pace effort at Canterbury two weeks ago. She’s again drawn wide and I’d be surprised if they don’t make her work to get across. She’s very promising and if she can win this race as easily as her first-up run then she might be a smart one. 3. Passage Of Time resumed with a very tough win at Rosehill after working off a wide gate and he was strongest on the line there. Definitely a big threat. Can’t leave out 2. In Times Of War who is yet to finish worse than second in 10 starts, the last four of those were won by Bonny O’Reilly, Memes, Nictock and Diddums – all very good sprinters.
How to play it: Osborne Bulls WIN ($2.90 TAB Fixed Odds); save on Slow Burn ($3.60).
Osborne Bulls runs second to Invincibella at Rosehill – September 27
|Race 8 - 5:30PM MCGRATH ESTATE AGENTS VIC HANDICAP (1100 METRES)|
I was on 15. Best Guess when he resumed at Canterbury two weeks ago and he was far from disgraced chasing home the very smart White Moss over the same trip. With that fitness under his belt and in a race where I’d be surprised if there isn’t a speed battle up front, even with Envy Of All coming out, he should get a nice run just off them and with even luck is capable of going one better.
Dangers: 6. Dixie Chick has become a bit costly to follow but the race also looks to set up well for her first-up off a nice trial behind Firsthand at the Farm last month. Blinkers go on and she should be strongest at the finish. 1. Good Time Charlie will probably get back and if they overdo it he should be finishing off strongly after resuming in a good form race at the Farm.
How to play it: Best Guess E/W ($4.80 TAB Fixed Odds).
Best Guess runs second when resuming at Canterbury – October 4