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Neil Evans' Tips For Wellington (Monday)

By Neil Evans

Track Good 3 and rail out 1m from 1000m to 600m, then 4m to the 300m into a Cut/away so generally on-pace before gradual trend towards the middle.

Race 1 MAIDEN PLATE (910m):

Mudgee 4YO gelding 2. Nitro Star is back for a second crack after a poor run on debut back in February, again coming off a nice trial win, but this time significantly without the blinkers.

Dangers: Dubbo 4YO mare 6. Bellzov Bourke has been costly for punters going under in both runs so far as an odds-on fancy, but draws well and looks suited around this track; Hawkesbury 5YO gelding 5. The Sprooker only just missed second-up as an odds-on favourite at Gilgandra, and draws to sit right behind the speed; Canberra 4YO mare 7. Freundin can finish hard from off the speed third-up; while 3YO Gulgong filly 10. Sniper Excels will also drift back and look to finish over the top fresh. Raced against stronger in the autumn and has trialled well.

How to play it: Nitro Star each way and trifecta 2,6/2,5,6,7,10. Odds and Evens (First 2): Evens.

Race 2 MAIDEN HCP (1110m):

Thin and open affair, with very little strong form on the board. Canberra 3YO filly 9. Rain Spirit resumes off a six month break without a public trial and minus the blinkers. Has plenty of ability, and two runs so far were in much deeper maiden company.

Dangers: Gulgong 5YO gelding 1. One More Poet made big improvement at second start, and draws to get the right sort of trail. Dubbo 3YO gelding 3. Harwok'n'zoff is big odds also returning without an official trial, but drops a long way back in class after being out the back in the feature Wellington Boot in the autumn; while 4YO Mudgee gelding 11. Trojan gets a nice weight drop second-up, and should be in the finish.

How to play it: Rain Spirit each way and box trifecta 1,9,3,11. Odds and Evens: Odds.

Race 3 CL1 & MAIDEN PLATE (1710m):

A few chances here over this tricky middle distance, but 3YO Scone gelding 7. Shame Warned looks the one to beat fourth-up off two solid runs in much stronger maidens, and gets in terrific at the weights. Was scratched from Wyong on Sunday.

Dangers: Dubbo 5YO gelding 1. Fast Talking confirmed his good run over the mile at Wyong by bolting home at Moruya when heavily backed, and can go on with the job, although wide barrier under this weight is the query. Dubbo 7YO gelding 11. Mount Taishan has far more ability than his poor winning strike rate shows. Closed off hard last start, and draws to get plenty of cover back in the field again. Scone 5YO mare and stablemate to the top selection 10. Vana Signora looks better suited up to this trip after hitting the line strongly in her last two; while 6YO Narromine mare 8. Bansuri has hit the line hard all prep, and just needs a good tempo up front so she can sweep home into the finish.

How to play it: Shame Warned to win and quinella 1 and 7. Odds and Evens: Odds.

Shame Warned's last start at Tamworth on August 9

Race 4 CL2 HCP (1400m):

Very even race. Dubbo 5YO gelding 4. Ben Shoof improved up in trip at good odds charging home to win at Bathurst, and can go back-to-back, with leading country rider sticking strong.

Dangers: Mudgee 5YO gelding 3. Vineyard is better than his two runs this prep suggest, and he can improve with the blinkers going on. Nyngan 4YO mare 5. Miss Lon has plenty of ability but seemed to lose all form through the middle of the year, but last run flashing home late at Narromine suggests she has her mind back on the job; while another 5YO Dubbo-trained gelding 6. Get Up Alby has only won one from 17, but consistently works home from the second half of the field, and sneaking right down in the weights.

How to play it: Ben Shoof to win and box trifecta 3,4,5,6. Odds and Evens: Split.

Race 5 BM 58 HCP (1410m):

They could probably run this several times for several different winners, but fourth-up in the prep is generally when 5YO Canberra gelding 1. Luga Lad starts to fire. Weighted to his best, but this is easier so should be really attacking the line.

Dangers: Watch for improvement third-up and back in grade from 5YO Scone mare 2. Willyama for a progressive stable. Dubbo 10YO gelding 5. Quietly Confident did his best work late resuming at home, and looks quite well in stepping up in trip, with a 2kg allowance; while Canberra 5YO gelding 6. Alpine King struggles to win, but comes back in grade and draws a nice gate.

How to play it: Luga Lad to win. Odds and Evens: Split.

Luga Lad's last start at Forbes on August 5

Race 6 OPEN HCP (1110m):

Feature sprint of the day. Loved the first-up win over a shorter trip by progressive 5YO Nyngan gelding 5. Thermosa who swooped late from midfield. Drops a little in weight from that effort, and draws to get plenty of cover off the speed.

Dangers: Bathurst 5YO mare 1. Jetgirl landed the prize two runs back in a BM 81 at home before run down by a smart galloper at Dubbo. Kembla 7YO gelding 4. Uno Best has been sparingly raced this prep, but won his only start at this track three runs back at BM 82 level when a solid firmer in the betting, and draws to be in the finish. Gulgong 7YO gelding 7. Attalea has been freshened back in trip, but tends to get a long way back so will need his share of luck from the inside barrier; while 7YO Condobolin gelding 6. Hope Island has wound back the clock to his younger days in his last two runs hitting the line hard, and has a soft draw where he can be saved up for one late run.

How to play it: Thermosa to win and quinella 1 and 5. Odds and Evens: Odds.

Race 7 CL3 HCP (910m):

Competitive race to close with over the short course. Improving 4YO Dubbo gelding 4. What The Fuss has been freshened up for this shorter journey after a dominant maiden win at this track. Well weighted after rider's claim, and he has the early tactical speed to overcome a tricky gate.

Dangers: Consistent 7YO Orange gelding 2. Panuara has been in and around the money all prep, without winning, and again should go close from an ideal draw to stalk the speed.

How to play it: What The Fuss to win. Odds and Evens: Evens.

All the fields, form and replays for Monday's Wellington meeting

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