By Brad Gray
Tips and race by race preview by Brad Gray for Saturday’s meeting on Royal Randwick’s Kensington track.
The rail is back to the True with the track currently rated a Good 4. The first jumps at 12:40pm.
|Race 1 - 12:40PM EVENTS BY ATC HANDICAP (1150 METRES)|
Siding with 4. Twentyfour Carat at the early odds on offer. The son of I Am Invincible, trained by John O’Shea, has had four trials and make good improvement from each of them. His last two efforts have been particularly pleasing, coasting to the line under little urging from Tommy Berry, who maintains the ride for the two-year-old’s debut. You get the impression that O’Shea’s stable, off a Saturday win with Live And Free last weekend, is starting to really click into gear. The draw probably dictates the tactics with Berry likely to take hold. Still worth a ticket at the odds on offer.
Dangers: 2. Jahbath looked very sharp going to the line with Deterge in his first trial before making much harder work of it on a heavy track in a Canterbury trial. The Hayes camp won last week’s two-year-old race with Movie Role and seem to be getting the placement spot on in Sydney with their younger horses. 1. Hightail chased gamely behind Movie Roll last week and has race experience in his side. He looks to want this extra trip now. No knock on the trial of 8. Avon River. It’s just the price. The Godolphin two-year-olds are always kept very safe in early markets. Tipping 3. Perlata will be the eye-catcher rattling home.
How to play it: Twentyfour Carat EACH WAY ($9 TAB Fixed Odds)
Twentyfour Carat’s latest Warwick Farm trial – Dec 27
|Race 2 - 1:20PM AUTUMN CARNIVAL ON SALE SPRINT (1150 METRES)|
Suspect 2. Easy Eddie has returned in the best form of his career. The four-year-old gelding was brave first up running third behind Kapajack despite being wide the trip with 60.5kg on his back. In second there was Mister Songman who of course blitzed his rivals last Saturday. Easy Eddie then held off Bel Sonic to win at Warwick Farm where Redouble, a subsequent winner himself, ran third. That was a much deeper race than the one he finds himself in here. Robbie Dolan, claiming 3kg, has ridden the Joe Pride-trained sprinter both times this preparation and will give him every chance again here. Should lead, kick and win. Would be surprised if he didn’t and happy to take the shorts.
Dangers: The only thing dropping faster than Easy Eddie’s odds are his rivals with After All Too Royal scratched to run at Canterbury on Friday night and now we’ve lost Bolero King too. That leaves us with 6. Intuition as the danger which goes some way to highlighting the strangle Easy Eddie has on this race. Still, Intuition is much more comfortable on Good tracks so expect him to bounce back while his stablemate 1. Malaise will be running on late, but is likely to find the 1150m too sharp.
How to play it: Easy Eddie WIN ($1.65 TAB Fixed Odds)
Easy Eddie’s last start win at Warwick Farm
|Race 3 - 1:55PM TAB HIGHWAY HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
Couldn’t find anything to beat 1. La Scopa here. She is the class mare of the field having been tried against the Group fillies back in April last year. In her two runs back she has charged late from wide draws to run second. She is desperate for more ground and although this is only 100m further than the races she has been contesting, coupled with what looks a good tempo up front, it sets up for her to rattle home over the top of these. Expect Brenton Avdulla to settle her midfield using the middle draw. You certainly won’t go too far wrong following the Matt Dunn stable in TAB Highway races. He has a knack for travelling down the right horse at exactly the right time in their campaign.
Dangers: Looking at 9. Te Ata’s recent finishing positions it’d be easy to be left wondering where he last start win came from. Have a look deeper and you’ll note her three runs prior to the win were all very good, and often without luck. In one she was bottled up in the fence while in the other two she rattled home from impossible positions (wide draws). She’s in this for Matt Dale, who is another trainer with a great Highway record. 2. Elegant Ellen ran midfield in a Highway two back but looks better suited to 1300m as opposed to 1500m.
How to play it: La Scopa WIN ($2.15 TAB Fixed Odds)
Te Ata strolling home at Canberra last start
|Race 4 - 2:30PM 2019 MEMBERSHIP HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
10. Nindamos recorded a stylish win at Wyong on debut and the clock backed it up. Punters Intelligence reveals his last 200m was particularly strong, posting a split of 11.58s. That was 2.5L quicker than the next best in the race. The Exceed And Excel three-year-old (out of Group One winner Neroli) was powerful through the line. The wide draw makes things trickier but Adam Hyeronimus is a typically positive rider so his first inclination will be to slide forward and try to slot in midfield. Whether he is afforded that opportunity is another matter. That said, the speed in this race looks genuine enough for him to get his chance.
Dangers: There was plenty of intent about the way 5. Silent Explorer trialled at Canterbury. He was hunted out to lead and made to win. His form lines through last preparation are strong enough to give this a shake too. He was 2L off Gem Song at Rosehill and then 3L off Yulong January where Royal Celebration was second. There is a sense of timing about 9. Sure Knee third up but didn’t expect her to be so well found! Of the rest, 7. Ljungberg will improve off his first up win, but will need to, while keep an eye on 2. Botti, a new recruit for Chris Waller. He wants further but looks a talent.
How to play it: Nindamos WIN ($6 TAB Fixed Odds) and Silent Explorer WIN ($16)
Nindamos winning on debut at Wyong
|Race 5 - 3:05PM TAB.COM.AU HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
1. Sweet Scandal comes back a few cogs in grade here and gets back on top of the ground. The four-year-old looked disappointing last start after box seating but banking that the wet track was part to blame. She has won on a soft track before but it was ‘a Canterbury soft’ not ‘a Randwick soft’. Two completely different beasts. Outside of 5. Art Of The Bar, there doesn’t look to be any other natural leader so Sam Weatherly should be able to coast across from the wide draw to sit outside of the early favourite. Sweet Scandal showed last campaign she is a quality mare, winning three straight before being narrowly denied by Irithea.
Dangers: Was it the 1400m that pulled up The Art Of The Bar at Warwick Farm last start? She certainly had her chance out in front when backed into $2.10. Back 100m to 1300m could see her bounce back. Likes the wet but don’t think a dry track will bring about her undoing. 4. Gongs struck all kinds of traffic problems at Randwick two back before winning well at Warwick Farm. Deep into a preparation but she only has to hold her form. 8. Connemara dashed quickly when asked at Randwick last start and this race sets up well for her, from the inside draw, if it’s a sit-sprint.
How to play it: Sweet Scandal EACH WAY ($6.50 TAB Fixed Odds)
Sweet Scandal was luckless first up at Rosehill
|Race 6 - 3:40PM THE AVIARY @ ROYAL RANDWICK HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
7. Let’s Party Marty goes in on top. This mare with John Thompson is very close to another win. Having taken a couple of runs to find her feet in Sydney, the ex-Queenslander has really hit her straps her last two when collared late at Canterbury by Southern Lad and then went down fighting at Warwick Farm last start behind Gongs. Go back through her form and she’s at her most effective when she right up there on the bunny. Both of her past wins (at Doomben and Ipswich) have been from the front. Doubt she can cross 2. Samadoubt she but should be able to settle second. James McDonald rides. Fancy her chances.
Dangers: 9. Skyray comes out of the same race as Let’s Party Marty last start behind Gongs. Loomed to win down the outside but peaked on his run. Punters Intelligence reveals Skyray ran the fastest 800-600m (11.63s), 600-400m (11.92s) and 400-200m (11.37s) before his last 200m ranked second to Gongs. He won’t have to sustain that wide run for as long here all going to plan for Brenton Avdulla from barrier 2. Samadoubt is your leader and will give a sight. His run last start was better than it reads. That was a deep race won by Easy Eddie, Belsonic, Redouble and Bon Amis beat him home. 5. Poetic Charmer brings winning form and although slight query around the depth of his form lines is chasing a hat trick so certainly want to keep him safe.
How to play it: Let’s Party Marty WIN ($5 TAB Fixed Odds) and SAVE Skyray ($6.50)
Let's Party Marty and Skyray last start
|Race 7 - 4:20PM KENSINGTON HANDICAP (1550 METRES)|
Deep breath, punters. Deep breath. 9. Gresham is a horse that hasn’t been on the right side of punters very often but he won’t get a better chance to bring up win number four than on Saturday. It is a race made to order. The gelding carries 49kg after the claim of Robbie Dolan. He is fourth up out to 1550m, on the seven day back up and won’t spend any petrol to find the front. He maps to get complete control from the outset and with the featherweight on his back, can’t see them running him down. The word of warning is that Gresham has been beaten 8 times at $3.20 or shorter in his 19 start career. It’s still his race to lose.
Dangers: 1. Spectroscope is slowly working his way back to form and reckon he can settle a lot closer from the good draw this time. If there is a danger, the way this race maps, it’ll be something within striking distance that possesses a good late dash and he fits that bill. There is a whopping 11kg difference between him and Gresham with Group Three winner Spectroscope lumping 60kg. 2. Invinzabeel had three trials ahead of his first up run for new trainer Mark Newnham so it wasn’t fitness that beat him. He’ll be much closer here which can see him bounce back.
How to play it: Gresham WIN ($2.30 TAB Fixed Odds)
Gresham finishing third last week behind Tip Top
|Race 8 - 5:00PM SUMMER RACING SPRINT (1000 METRES)|
4. Heart Conquered is very fast and can do it both ends. The knock on him on Saturday is he needs to prove he is not just a wet tracker but suspect he will. His two latest wins have been ultra-impressive, both on heavy tracks at Warwick Farm. The three-year-old, earmarked by Team Hawkes for much bigger and better things in the future, put a space in his rivals last start. Punters Intelligence highlights that the gelding’s last 200m was the quickest of the race at 11.95s and the only runner in the field to break 12s home. That makes you very hard to beat in any race you contest.
Dangers: No surprises for guessing that 11. Sei Stella is pegged as the danger. It’s easy to be dismissive of TAB Highway Handicap form, even winners, when they find themselves in town in benchmark races but Sei Stella looks one of the exceptions. The Matt Dale-trained speedster is exceptionally quick and has won four from six. Doubt they’ll lead her from barrier 3 and the three weeks between runs is perfect, in order to keep her fresh. The two fancies should take this up before fighting it out. The danger if they carve each other up is 3. Revenire back on a dry deck.
How to play it: Heart Conquered WIN ($2.90 TAB Fixed Odds)
Heart Conquered spacing his rivals at Warwick Farm
|Race 9 - 5:40PM AUSTRALIAN TURF CLUB HANDICAP (1550 METRES)|
13. Toroso has been very good in his two runs back and the form around him is stacking up. The Peter and Paul Snowden-trained four-year-old went down narrowly to Fuchu (has won two more since) at Newcastle first up before running third behind Thy Kingdom Come at Kensington in a race the winner completely dominated from the front. He never looked likely but the run was better than it reads and second there was Love Shack Baby who has since won himself. This is an even race but there are plenty of elements in Toroso’s favour. Drawn 1, gets in with 54.5kg and is out to 1550m. The son of Pierro has only had seven starts so there’s scope for improvement too.
Dangers: 11. Super Star Bob put the writing on the wall last start and this is a winnable race. Hugh Bowman rides and wouldn’t be surprised if he rode an arrogant race, banking on him being the best horse in the field. 4. Nicci’s Gold is flying for Gary Portelli but she’s backmarker so needs things run to suit. The wet track might have flattered her last start but no doubt can win again. 1. Coonawarra boasts a big duck egg in the form guide first up but did exactly the same last preparation before winning second up. He is a touch over the odds here and is worth including in exotics.
How to play it: Toroso EACH WAY ($8.50 TAB Fixed Odds)
Toroso finding the line on the Kenso track last start