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Neil Evans's Selections For Wellington Races (Monday)

By Neil Evans

The track is a Good 4 with the rail out 4m from the 1400m to the winning post; in True position the remainder.

Race 1 (12:55pm) KURRINDA BLOODSTOCK CG&E MAIDEN PLATE (1100M)

We start a big and wide card with an open maiden for boys. Keen on Scone three-year-old 12. Saint Kitts ($6 on TAB) who debuts with winkers on and off a couple of impressive and forward trials.

Dangers: Expect big improvement at second start from rival Scone four-year-old 6. Pride Of Mo ($4.80) who didn't handle the heavy track on debut. Watch the betting on locally-trained 11. Ogrim ($13) who looks ready to return off a short spell blowing away his rivals by more than 13 lengths in a recent trial and blinkers go on, while three-year-old 8. Bean Hot ($3.60 favourite) made a mockery of his huge price on debut at Gilgandra, charging home to miss by a long neck.

How to play it: Saint Kitts to win
Odds and Evens: Evens

Race 2 (1:30pm) HUNTER 2 COAST EQUINE SALT THERAPY MAIDEN HANDICAP (1400M)

Another wide-open maiden with many hopes. Like Bathurst mare 2. Zoo Station ($2.20 fav) going up in distance at her third start after being scratched from Orange on Friday to be saved for this.

Dangers: Improving mare 11. Tariff Trump ($4) looks close after three improving runs back from a spell and 10. Spritza Seritza ($10) can also peak from a good draw fourth-up.

How to play it: Zoo Station to win
Odds and Evens: Split

Race 3 (2:05pm) ONE STOP AUTOMOTIVE CLASS 1 & MAIDEN PLATE (1700M)

Plenty of chances again, although this suits Scone mare 11. Forever Spotted ($4.60 fav) dropping back in trip off a freshen-up. Has found the line well into three placings this prep and looks well in on the limit weight.

Dangers: Dubbo five-year-old 7. Yak ($6.50) is better placed coming back to this distance after sticking on okay in a deeper race at Orange. Home track four-year-old 2. Beaumains ($8) put aside some inconsistent form to bolt in his maiden here on Boxing Day over this distance, and is drawn to get good cover off the speed. Improving 4. Raglan ($8.50) has been given four weeks between runs since sweeping home to win his maiden at big odds, while similarly 5. Talented Escape ($11) also claimed his maiden deep into this prep, although he's on the eight-day back-up.

How to play it: Forever Spotted to win and box exacta 2,7,11
Odds and Evens: Split

Race 4 (2:40pm) GLEN GALLIC STUD F&M MAIDEN PLATE (1100M)

Back to the sprint trip for the maiden girls with a few key first starters on show. Liked the way one of them, Scone filly 11. Croatian Madame ($9) finished off her trial under a nice hold, cruising home right behind the winner who had set up a solid tempo, although the overall time was slow.

Dangers: Expect filly 13. Super Chance ($3.80) to improve third-up on a drier surface and with blinkers added. Watch the betting on 12. Discompose ($13) who debuts off two trials for smart Scone yard, while must keep safe consistent mare 5. Kogi Lass ($3.60 fav) who hit the line nicely first-up at Gilgandra.

How to play it: Croatian Madame each way and box trifecta 5,11,12,13
Odds and Evens: Odds

Race 5 (3:15pm) WELLINGTON SAND AND GRAVEL CLASS 1 HANDICAP (1100M)

Strong line-up for this grade. Talented Scone filly 1. Very Sharp ($3.10) has had a good freshen-up since having little luck in the run in a BM 58 at Quirindi. Blinkers have been added and she just needs to slot in from a tricky draw.

Dangers: Plenty of them headed by rival Scone mare 6. La Trioli ($4.80) who also has raced without luck in two runs for the new stable since switching from the Gold Coast. Gets her chance here from a better draw.

How to play it: Very Sharp to win and quinella 1 and 6
Odds and Evens: Split

Race 6 (3:50pm) LOCKSMITH AND SECURITY SOLUTIONS BENCHMARK 58 HCP (1000M)

Progressive Scone mare 4. On Time ($4.80) resumes in a suitable sprint. No official trials coming in but already a smart fresh winner and draws to get a handy trail a few lengths off the speed.

Dangers: Capable mare 6. Alchera ($3.80) struggled off the wide draw in a much deeper race at Gosford, but beat a handy field this grade three runs back before strong to the line in a Highway. With any sort of cover, she can charge into the finish. Watch the betting on Dubbo filly 5. Praline ($3.60 fav) who resumes off a near six-month spell with no public trials, but has done plenty of work and comes to hand quickly.

How to play it: On Time to win
Odds and Evens: Evens

Race 7 (4:30pm) OVER THE LINE RACING BENCHMARK 58 HANDICAP (1000M)

Again the restricted sprinters face off. Tough mare 6. Miss Hugo A Gogo ($6.50) hasn't won for a long time but resumes off a nice trial behind a potentially very good horse. Relishes firm tracks and by far all her best form is first-up.

Dangers: Similarly, it's been a winning drought for seven-year-old 2. Fine Hero ($11) but the drop in grade and trip fourth-up are both plusses. Include in exotics 7. Simcha ($4.20) who motored home to miss narrowly in a weaker race second-up at Warren.

How to play it: Miss Hugo A Gogo each way
Odds and Evens: Split

Race 8 (5:10pm) KODY NESTOR RACING BENCHMARK 58 HANDICAP (1400M)

This looks ripe for Gulgong mare 4. Ginger's Voice ($3.20 fav) third-up via a little freshen-up and winning a trial. Has done her best work late in two runs back at Dubbo and out to this distance looks ideal.

Dangers: Gilgandra-based 6. Bid To Fame ($6.50) is a threat dropping in grade from the inside draw and back on firmer footing. Tough eight-year-old 1. Noel's Gift ($9) also drops in grade with the blinkers back on. Honest seven-year-old 2. Lucienne ($13) has battled away all prep without threatening, but this is his easiest assignment in a while and draws to get a soft run around midfield. Dubbo mare 8. Spinher ($4.20) steps up from consecutive wins in a weaker class.

How to play it: Ginger's Voice to win and box exacta 1,4,6
Odds and Evens: Evens

Race 9 (5:50pm) TEMERITY PARK BENCHMARK 58 HANDICAP (1400M)

Similar battle to finish although less depth. Improving mare 5. Arithmetic ($5) can strike second-up with winkers going on. Finished nicely behind the placegetters in a good Class 2 at Orange and carries 1kg less here.

Dangers: Tough five-year-old 1. A Krupt Pick ($4.80 fav) was brave from the wide gate holding off the challengers third-up in that same race at Orange. Normally holds his form but again forced to do it from a very wide barrier. Consistent mare 6. Harabel ($7.50) has been finding the line all prep and desperate for this trip now, while 7. Bring The Joy ($6.50) is the best of the rest.

How to play it: Arithmetic to win
Odds and Evens: Odds

BEST BETS
R5 1. VERY SHARP
R8 4. GINGER'S VOICE

BEST VALUE
R6 4. ON TIME

View the final fields with full form & race replays for Wellington here

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