By Brad Gray
Tips and race by race preview by Brad Gray for Randwick.
The rail is out 5m and the form has been done for a soft/heavy track.
|Race 1 - 12:40PM PRECISE AIR HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
1. The Art Of Flying has run well in his two starts, despite never really threatening the winner on either occasion. The Flying Artie colt ran second to Sneaky Five on debut at Moonee Valley, the subsequent winner of the $1m Golden Gift, before running third behind Anamoe and Forbes at Sandown. He was beaten by 2.8L and had every chance but if either of those two-year-olds were here, they’d be a commanding favourite. Out to 1200m does look to suit now at start number three. Add into the equation what an exceptional job Ciaron Maher and David Eustace do with their juveniles, The Art Of Flying becomes appealing in what looks a very winnable race. The barrier looks a touch tricky but foresee Rachel King coming out neutral, trying to slot in.
Dangers: We can get a rough line on The Art Of Flying and 2. Paulele through Qeyaady. Paulele beat him by four lengths while The Art Of Flying held just a two length margin. Is it enough to justify such a big price discrepancy though? I’d argue no. That’s not to say Paulele wasn’t impressive on debut, albeit in a race where the times weren’t too crash hot. Interesting that James McDonald sticks with the Chris Walller-trained 6. Coastwatch, despite being aboard unraced stablemate 5. Zarastro in his most recent trial. Coastwatch was unlucky not to win at Warwick Farm last start but there has to be a question mark over the depth of that midweek form line.
How to play it: The Art Of Flying WIN ($7 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
|Race 2 - 1:15PM TAB HIGHWAY CLASS 2 HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
1. Perfect Pitch already has a Highway win to her name and she looks well placed to claim a second here. The five-year-old has only won two from 31 but her last start second in BM72 company at Warwick Farm reads well for this Class 2. She is back in trip from 1600m to 1300m within the space of 10 days, so perhaps would have been better suited with a drop of rain but the daughter of Pierro has shown in the past that she handles all surfaces. Three kilo claimer Ellen Hennessy is tasked with getting her home from a wide draw but without emergencies it reads barrier 7 of 12. Just let her balance up and let her rip down the middle of the track. Only needs to hold her form to win.
Dangers: Wary of second emergency 14. Belleistic Lover if she happens to jag a spot in the field. Ran poorly in Highway company at the backend of last preparation but she had come to the end of a busy campaign. Did enough first up over 1200m. 3. Costas had no luck at Scone last start, maps to get the run of the race and handles all surfaces. 13. Nuremburg Castle has been around the mark recently without winning. That's typically a knock but this is not a deep Highway Handicap.
How to play it: Perfect Pitch WIN ($4.60 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Perfect Pitch last start at Warwick Farm
|Race 3 - 1:50PM TAB HIGHWAY CLASS 2 HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
2. Another One never really looked comfortable three weeks ago at Randwick where he started $3 favourite. He went back from the wide draw, was under the pump turning for home but picked up again late to finish sixth. Happy to give him the benefit of the doubt given what he had done prior to that. It was his first trip away from Wagga, with his three previous starts all coming on his home track. Handles all surfaces, however, he gets another horror draw. Not sure where he gets to in the run. Tom Sherry is the man tasked with that job but if this gelding gets any luck in slotting in, he’ll bounce back. Quietly confident of that.
Dangers: 11. Clay Pan Boogie was a cosy winner at Bathurst at his second career start having put the writing on the wall on debut. The lightly-raced five-year-old fronts up for start number four and we’ve seen enough of James Ponsonby to now know how well he places his horses. 5. Kattegat might have the chance to settle closer from barrier 1 but he won’t want to be bottled up. His turn is coming in a Highway and he ran well first up after trialling impressively too this time back. 13. Loving Cilla is a mare with so much upside but has it all come too soon for her? Thought she might want the mile now, as opposed to coming back slightly in trip. 6. Saintly Sunrise looks the knockout.
How to play it: Another One WIN ($4.80 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Another One and Kattegat last start
|Race 4 - 2:25PM SCHEMBRAE'S @ BLUEBERRY HILLS HANDICAP (2000 METRES)|
The main point for 1. Elaborate is we know exactly what to expect. The five-year-old is so consistent. He hasn’t finished outside of the top three in his last seven starts. Doubt that trend is broken here given how well he has returned. He got a narrow verdict over Stockman first up over 1400m, loving the heavy conditions, before just missing to Matowi over the mile at Kembla Grange. Only now is he out to his right trip of 2000m. Nash Rawiller is missing from the equation, having formed a great partnership with the stayer, but Tim Clark is an ideal replacement. In race with plenty of queries, Elaborate each way looks the way to go.
Dangers: 8. Accountability was scratched last week with a vet’s certificate. That was over 2400m too, a race that was thought to be his ‘grand final’. He can win, no doubt in the world, but is it the type of set up where punters want to be diving in at $2.80? Now for 4. Vadiyann. Can we trust him to bounce back after showing so little first up? Has been back to the trials (where he looked great) but it’s a giant leap of faith. Is there enough in his early price to take that leap? 6. Gone Bye will be the one keeping him honest in front. Import 13. Milestone offers a different form line from Victoria. Might want 2400m now but he showed last start that his first Australian win isn’t far away.
How to play it: Elaborate EACH WAY ($10 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Elaborate last start at Kembla Grange
|Race 5 - 3:00PM SKY RACING ACTIVE HANDICAP (1600 METRES)|
Loved the first up run from 4. Fulmina . The mare got a mile out of her ground from the wide draw but rattled home with dominant closing splits compared to that of her rivals. One of which was 2. New Arrangement. Particularly liked how she ran right through the line despite settling last with nothing to take her into the race. She strips fitter second up, gets out to the mile and should camp behind the leaders from the draw. The daughter of Snitzel produced an exceptional win at Randwick to round out her preparation last time in and a repeat of that wins this too.
Dangers: New Arrangement never really got out of second gear last Saturday, hence the quick backup. A must for trifectas but he certainly doesn’t make a habit of winning. 3. Betcha Flying had her own hard luck tale to tell from the same race as Fulmina. May have won it with clear running. She'll be the biggest beneficiary in this race from the rain missing Randwick. 5. Oakfield Missile was a sneaky ninth behind Fulmina and co.
How to play it: Fulmina WIN ($2.40 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
"She strips fitter, gets out to the mile and should camp behind the leaders."
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) December 17, 2020
|Race 6 - 3:40PM RANVET HANDICAP (1400 METRES)|
6. Bring The Ransom is flying this time in. Two back she gunned down subsequent winner Surreal Step at Newcastle before having no luck at all two weeks ago behind 5. Vitesse, who had got complete control of the race from the outset. That a little concern again, the potential lack of speed up front but Tim Clark jumps back on Bring The Ransom and should be able to park the four-year-old midfield, within striking distance. Fourth up last campaign she had no luck whatsoever behind Mo’s Crown, where she’d have finished on the winner’s heels had the splits come.
Dangers: 11. Maui Girl was very good first up in an unsuitably run race. Can camp closer this second up and is better on top of the ground. Vitesse has to be a big threat given that she’ll bounce out, make the running and maintains the services of James McDonald. She did get a very soft lead last start so it’ll be up to 3. Invinciano and 2. Helga to ensure that doesn’t happen again. On Helga, she raced wide throughout first up. Forgive her that and her form lines are very strong for this. 9. Saigon will settle out the back but she should have gone undefeated in four starts last campaign. Will need a few things to go her way but she can win. 4. Sausedge is knocking on the door.
How to play it: Bring The Ransom WIN ($6 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Bring The Ransom and Vitesse last start
|Race 7 - 4:20PM CITY TATTERSALLS CLUB HANDICAP (1000 METRES)|
11. Our Bellagio Miss worked too hard to cross last start on the Kensington track and felt the pinch the last 50m. The 3.3L margin and seventh placing don’t do the run justice. That was second up. The four-year-old’s first up run was a beauty having covered ground throughout, running second to Hulk. That was in this BM78 company right down in the weights. It’s the same set up here with just 52kg on her back. It’s a luxury to have a jockey of Rachel King’s calibre riding that light. The Greg Hickman-trained sprinter took nine starts to break her maiden but she’s progressed from country grade to town quickly since then. Likely to take a trail given how hot the speed looks here.
Dangers: I’d argue that 10. Sally’s Day is the best horse in this race. Her benchmark suggests otherwise but she is Listed placed, behind Fituese and Aquitaine. Her first up run was excellent, clocking the fastest closing splits of the entire meeting. The knock is that, to date, she hasn’t been anywhere near as dynamic second up in the past. 3. Lashes latest two runs were plain but in her last two campaigns, she’s been excellent first up. 4. Human Nature is back in grade but a query on a wet track. 5. Partners will give a sight but needed the run first up last preparation. 12. Mission River resumes a gelding.
How to play it: Our Bellagio Miss EACH WAY ($11 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Our Bellagio Miss two starts ago behind Hulk
|Race 8 - 5:00PM BISLEY WORKWEAR HANDICAP (1400 METRES)|
10. Hilo has been freshened up since running fourth at Newcastle on Hunter Day. The four-year-old was given every possible chance one-out one-back but didn’t quicken. That form reference of Through The Cracks is rock solid though and although 7. Edison beat him home, Hilo did hold off Edison the start prior at Randwick. The son of Lonhro is up in grade but gets into this handicap with 53kg having carried 57kg and 59kg at his past two starts. It’s an approach we see Godolphin have great success with in Sydney. Hilo is 3:1-0-2 at this track and love how he maps behind what shapes to be a busy first half with plenty of runners jostling for a spot up front.
Dangers: Edison got up off the canvas to win at Rosehill a fortnight ago having run second at his two runs prior. He is racing as well as ever but will have to absorb more pressure here. That said, he absorbed plenty at Newcastle and was still in the finish. 12. Badoosh is way out of his grade and the stable has a Magic Millions aspirations, but he fits into this race rather well. 3. Passage Of Time rates a mention and will race more forward third up out to 1400m.
How to play it: Hilo WIN ($3.60 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Hilo’s Randwick tickover trial
|Race 9 - 5:40PM HEINEKEN HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
7. Mo’s Crown handles all surfaces, is racing as well as ever this time back, makes his own luck on the speed and James McDonald is undefeated in two rides on the no-nonsense four-year-old. It’s an easy and compelling case to make for Jason Coyle’s tough gelding. Mo’s Crown was a dominant winner first up at Kembla Grange, where 9. Big Parade faded to finish midfield, before coming back to 1100m at Rosehill only to be gunned down late by Pandemic and Albumin. Back out to 1200m looks the perfect set up now fourth up and the inside draw gives J-Mac plenty of options.
Dangers: 4. Poetic Charmer was thundering home behind Mo’s Crown first up, with Punters Intelligence revealing his 32.95s last 600m was the quickest closing split across the entire meeting. He’ll lob out the back again from the wide draw but if the leaders overdo it up front he can most certainly win. 3. Yamazaki is a dead set dry tracker and has stakes form from last preparation. 10. Kordia was a big winner first up last preparation but would have liked to have seen a touch more from him in his trials. 11. Threeood never got into the race last Saturday where the winner smashed the clock. The wet looks a plus for her. 5. McCormack is always a knockout hope.
How to play it: Mo’s Crown WIN ($4.20 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
Mo’s Crown last start at Rosehill
|Race 10 - 6:20PM SCHWEPPES HANDICAP (1400 METRES)|
1. St Covet’s Spirit looks so well placed in BM72 company with 58kg on her back. It’s the same weight she carried in a BM78 last start having dropped two ratings points since. She is still six points clear of her nearest rival. Like how she speared to the line first up over 1200m at Newcastle after a chequered run home before being forced back to last at Rosehill a fortnight ago in a race dominated from start to finish by the leader and eventful winner Vitesse. It was third up last preparation that she ran second in the G3 Hawkesbury Guineas splitting Dawn Passage and Icebath. Like the booking of Tim Clark and drawn low, the four-year-old grey should be able to park midfield. The price is just too tempting for a mare of her class.
Dangers: 8. Black Duke fought out the finish with Oscar Zulu last start and had caught the eye behind Ballistic Lover first up over 1000m. The step out to 1400m looks ideal now third up and he is already a wet track winner in town. 4. More Prophets won well first up over 1100m and is even better suited out to 1400m. The temptation with 13. Tamerlane is that he’s completely untapped. Won on protest first up but liked how he flattened out through the line. 2. Papal Warrior was entitled to do a touch more second up but he strips fitter and gets James McDonald. Has still only won the one race, though. The heavily-backed 6. Bluff ‘N’ Bluster comes out of a deep BM78 at Rosehill and is far from hopeless in this.
How to play it: St Covet’s Spirit EACH WAY ($9 TAB Fixed Odds) Odds & Evens: SPLIT
St Covet’s Spirit last start