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Neil Evans' Tips For Goulburn (Thursday)

By Neil Evans

Track improving to around Good 4, with the Rail out 6m so predominantly on or near the speed and just off the fence.

Race 1 CLASS 2 HCP (1000m):

Small but competitive field over the short course. Local 4YO gelding 4. Indicators On has had little or no luck in last two runs, and could easily have won both. Gap closed at a vital stage last start when heavily backed in a handy Class 3 at Wagga, before driving late to just miss. Back on home track, looks the one to beat from a nice trailing draw.

Dangers: Rosehill 3YO gelding 2. King's Champ can improve with the blinkers going on after two plain efforts in deeper metro company.

How to play it: Indicators On to win. Odds and Evens: (First 2): Evens

Race 2 MAIDEN PLATE (1000m):

Back to the maidens over the same trip, and 3YO Warwick Farm gelding 3. No Doubt A Star looks the clear benchmark off his last two runs. Chased home Covert Ops two back at Newcastle before working home late here. from a wide barrier Drawn much better here so wont be as far off them on the turn.

Dangers: Local 3YO gelding 2. Ghost Town has had a little freshen-up and sound trial since failing in a Moruya maiden at second start, and can improve sharply back on firmer footing. Local mare 6. Wegee Lou who got home okay on debut at Wagga, and 4YO Warwick Farm gelding 1. At The Helm can fight out the minor end of the prize.

How to play it: No Doubt A Star to win. Odds and Evens: Split

No Doubt A Star runs third at Goulburn on February 23

Race 3 MAIDEN HCP (1400m):

More depth over the longer journey here, but 3YO Hawkesbury gelding 2. Stiller has found a nice race resuming for only his second start, and is over the odds. Worked home okay behind talented Tombstone at Newcastle on debut, and recent trial was solid.

Dangers: Improving 3YO Randwick filly 4. Iconista can also go close off a sound debut run here when forced to work across from a wider draw. Fitter, and drawn closer in, he can stalk the speed and surge into the finish. Home track 4YO gelding 1. Azoustic hasn't been far off them all prep under big weights, and trainer has removed the winkers. Was only beaten 1.6 lens here three runs back by smart Opacity who has since bolted in a BM 64 at Gosford, and even more impressive a BM 70 at Canterbury.

How to play it: Stiller to win and quinella 2 and 4. Odds and Evens: Evens

Race 4 3YO MAIDEN PLATE (1200m):

Intriguing maiden, with a few hopes. Improving 3YO Warwick Farm gelding 4. Green Jacket is well placed third-up on a bigger track over a little more ground. Chased home a smart youngster second-up at Bathurst, and down a little in weight.

Dangers: Hawkesbury 3YO 1. Bigger Than Thorn returns as a gelding off two forward trials for smart stable. Was a heavily-backed odds-on fancy second-up at Mudgee in spring, and given time now to mature, could easily take big strides this prep. Another one from the Farm, 3YO filly 8. Blazing Mac was just fair on debut at Gosford, but also better suited from a softer draw on a bigger track; while watch the market on nicely bred debutant 3YO gelding 7. Significant Rule (Medaglia D'oro x Crowned Rule by Danehill) from the Waterhouse-Bott stable who has worked through his trials nicely.

How to play it: Green Jacket to win and box trifecta 1,4,7,8. Odds and Evens: Split

Race 5 BM 58 HCP (1600m):

Progressive 4YO local gelding 2. Wardeck can go right on with the job after surging home for a smart win second-up at Wagga in a handy Class 1. Only other win was here in his maiden three runs back, and already well proven as a reliable weight carrier. Trainer and jockey have struck up an impressive partnership.

Dangers: Don't under-sell 5YO Warwick Farm gelding and ex SA stayer 1. Colesberg because of a poor winning strike-rate. Likes to roll forward, and held his ground into second last two runs against deeper opposition. Rises sharply back up to 61kg, but no question he is capable of carrying that. Rival 3YO Farm gelding and lightly-raced 3. Buzz 'N' Joe made it two wins from four starts this prep thundering home from midfield in a Class 1 at Mudgee, although up in weight and drawn further out. Hawkesbury 5YO 5. Make An Offer was a dominant maiden winner at Bathurst two runs back before sticking on well behind Buzz 'N' Joe at Mudgee; while Warwick Farm 4YO 6. Temperate was game first-up in the heavy on the Beaumont track, and won his maiden here second-up in first prep last winter.

How to play it: Wardeck to win and trifecta 1,2/1,2,3,5,6/1,2,3,5,6. Odds and Evens: Split

Race 6 MAIDEN PLATE (1600m):

Reasonably open maiden over the mile at set weights, although much depends on 3YO Randwick gelding 4. Fast Melody finding his best after flopping first-up here when heavily backed into a short quote. His spring form around the mile would shake the life out of this, and draws to get a charmed run just off the speed.

Dangers: Randwick gelding 2. Zombie was specked at a big price before a fair first-up effort in the heavy on the Beaumont track, and this looks an ideal follow-up assignment for one who raced up to 2000m in spring and is bred along useful staying lines; while 3YO gelding 3. Elon is best of the rest despite not having run a place in eight starts so far.

How to play it: Fast Melody to win and quinella 2 and 4. Odds and Evens: Evens.

Fast Melody runs third at Goulburn on February 23

Race 7 BM 66 HCP (1200m):

Most competitive race of the day closes the card, and there are several chances headed by emerging 3YO Warwick Farm gelding 9. Capri Lane who gets winkers for the first time. Won both country runs in spring to launch his career before resuming with a tidy effort in the heavy on the Beaumont track, but improves sharply second-up on firmer footing.

Dangers: Local 3YO gelding 2. Cock Match resumes off a sound trial behind a smart youngster, and was a very solid performer against stronger in spring. Draws to park in a nice spot on-speed, although up to his biggest career weight. Big market watch on 4YO ex-Ballina gelding 6. Beach Baby now with the Joe Pride yard at Warwick Farm who hasn't started since consecutive wins more than a year ago, but looked sharp through inferior heavy ground in the second of two recent trials, and trainer has rung the gear changes. Progressive and lightly raced 4YO Canberra mare 5. Flora Bel is over the odds second-up off a nice first-up closing run in a strong Federal. Not overly well in at the weights, but already a second-up winner, and trainer is coming off a good Black Opal/Canberra Cup carnival.

How to play it: Capri Lane to win and trifecta 2,9/2,5,6,9/2,5,6,9. Odds and Evens: Split.

All the fields, form and replays for Thursday's Goulburn meeting

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