By Brad Gray
Tips and race by race preview by Brad Gray for Saturday’s meeting at Royal Randwick.
The rail is out 6m, the track is expected to race in the good range and the first set to go at 12:40pm.
|Race 1 - 12:40PM TAB HIGHWAY PLATE (1600 METRES)|
4. My Blue Jeans looks well suited here fourth up out to the mile for Danny Williams. The four-year-old showed great speed first up to sit outside the leader in a 1000m race and despite finding others too sharp, it suggests he shouldn’t have any trouble cruising across from the wide draw to sit outside the leader again. Second up he was solid over 1250m at Canterbury in BM70 grade before he pulled up lame over 1400m last start. Forgive him that. It was a handy race too with Cuba leading all the way beating Rock. He was a Highway winner back in June last year. He hasn’t won one since, trying another five times, but this is the most suitable one he has run since that Highway in June.
Dangers: 5. Pierino stuck on okay over 1300m second up. Should be ready now and imagine Corey Brown is positive early to have him close to the speed. 3. Hard Core looks the likely leader but is a query over the mile. Still, he looks to get on pace favours. 2. Dream Builder got too far back at Warwick Farm last start but liked how he worked to the line. If Adam Hyeronimus, the right man for the job, can have him closer, he is likely to be running on into the money. 7. Haames had no luck at all out to 1800m last start. Has always been a touch one-paced but the blinkers went on there and looked to sharpen him up.
How to play it: My Blue Jeans WIN ($10 TAB Fixed Odds)
My Blue Jeans run at Canterbury two back
|Race 2 - 1:20PM AUSTRALIAN FIRE HOSE HANDICAP (2000 METRES)|
5. Goathland tackles this 2000m assignment first up but I see that as a positive. At his first start for Kim Waugh, the former Lloyd Williams-owned seven-year-old, won the ANZAC Cup over 1800m. He did it in good fashion too, beating Etymology. Last preparation he resumed over 1400m and found it far too short. Like backing these former European imports fresh over a staying trip as it is quite often when they produce their best form. Two trials will have him fit and he looked quite sharp in both of them. Blake Shinn rides and he’ll be stalking what looks like a genuine speed from the low draw. Expect him to run a big race.
Dangers: 10. Looks Like Elvis has had a very busy preparation but continues to hold his form. Across his last four runs he has raced in three different states. The latest of those was Victoria where he went down narrowly at Flemington over 2000m. His two Sydney runs prior to that were rock solid and he looks well placed here with 54.5kg and Kerrin McEvoy steering. 1. Penske and 4. Cosmologist are the two early favourites but won’t help each other’s chances. Expect Cosmologist to find the fence with Penske forced to sit outside of him. That’ll ensure a good clip and leave them vulnerable late. 9. Hursley did enough first up while keep an eye on any market moves for 11. Desert Path.
How to play it: Goathland EACH WAY ($11 TAB Fixed Odds)
Goathland winning the ANZAC Cup
|Race 3 - 1:55PM SCHWEPPES SKYLINE STAKES (1200 METRES)|
3. Microphone was really impressive down the straight at Flemington last time out. His form prior to that was rock solid but he elevated himself to another level there. The Exceed And Excel colt, in the Godolphin yard, gapped his rivals and stopped the clock in very sharp time for the 1100m trip. James McDonald sticks and should have him in the first two. Can see 8. Fiery Red being very aggressively ridden to take up the running, but outside of that there isn’t an abundance of early speed engaged. The 1200m doesn’t look an issue on the strength of his work across the line last start.
Dangers: 7. Sun Patch was brilliant on debut. The manner in which he won on the Kensington track suggests the 1200m will be right up his alley now. The Ron Quinton youngster looked to be going two strides to his rival’s one in the last 150m. He’s untapped and could be top shelf. We will find out a lot more about him here but the $10 is an enticing gamble. 1. Castelvecchio and 2. Accession renew their rivalry from the Inglis Millennium. Castelvecchio has struck two races with hot speed so far in his career. That won’t be the case here but he can sustain a sprint and we still really don’t know how good he is. Accession has been up for a while now, especially for a Chris Waller two-year-old, but just keeps fronting up.
How to play it: Microphone WIN ($3.10 TAB Fixed Odds) and Sun Patch WIN ($10)
Castelvecchio and Accession in the Inglis Millennium
|Race 4 - 2:30PM LIBERTY INTERNATIONAL UNDERWRITERS SWEET EMBRACE STAKES (1200 METRES)|
The Skyline Stakes looks a deep edition this year but not convinced the same can be said for the fillies lining up in the Sweet Embrace. That’s why I’ve got no hesitation in tipping 7. Super Oasis coming off a second at the midweeks on debut. It was ‘a second at the midweeks’ only by the bare numbers in the form guide though. It was an outstanding effort. She got a long way back from the wide draw and had to switch off heels before hitting the line with behind Sun Patch. Punters Intelligence reveals her last 600m was in 33.27s, half a length quicker than Sun Patch (33.37s). That form should stack up here back to her own sex. She showed speed there so expect her to be much closer from barrier 3.
Dangers: 2. Kiamichi showed ticker to win on debut before running second to Czarson the last time we saw her. They ran quick time there and there was a sizeable gap back to third. Looked in good order in taking out a trial recently. There is a query around the depth of this year’s Blue Diamond but 3. Anaheed did run fifth in it. She ran out of room up the inside and it looked certain to cost her finishing fourth. Tipping 11. Let It Pour went a bit better than Bjorn Baker expected in her Monday trial against Exhilarates hence the late entry into this race. 10. Emeralds has also trialled nicely. Risking 1. Amercement at the price.
How to play it: Super Oasis WIN ($7 TAB Fixed Odds) and 7,2 QUINELLA
Super Oasis on debut (watch for Sun Patch too)
|Race 5 - 3:05PM OPTUS LIVERPOOL CITY CUP (1300 METRES)|
1. Dreamforce looked to be travelling like the winner in the Southern Cross first up but never saw daylight. He went to the line largely untested but for the last 100m. He pays the penalty for his consistency here with the 59.5kg but that’s the only knock. Blake Shinn takes over from Hugh Bowman and should have little trouble ambling across to sit outside of 9. You Make Me Smile in the run. Like that set up for Dreamforce because he has shown he can sprint quickly from the front in the past. Hence his record of nine wins from 22 starts. If there is a silver lining to his luckless first up outing it’s that he’ll still be nice and fresh to tackle the 1300m second up.
Dangers: You Make Me Smile has improved every time he has stepped out this preparation. Where is his ceiling? The free-rolling four-year-old is jumping from a BM88 to a Group Three but he deserves his shot. On benchmark ratings he should be getting even more weight off Dreamforce but the 6.5kg is still a sizeable difference. 2. Advance Yulong is the wildcard in the race. He is a dual Group Two winner from Germany stepping out for Chris Waller for the first time. Has jumped out in Melbourne and did enough. Waller keep insisting the import has speed but it’d be to his detriment taking on the two likely leaders. Happy to just have a look at him on Saturday.
How to play it: Dreamforce WIN ($3.10 TAB Fixed Odds)
Dreamforce was luckless first up
|Race 6 - 3:40PM TAB CHIPPING NORTON STAKES (1600 METRES)|
5. Winx will moonwalk past her rivals to bring up win number 31 in a row, break the world record for Group One wins and claim her fourth straight Chipping Norton Stakes. All in a day’s work for the champ. She showed first up that she has returned as well as ever and can only go on from that. Five of her six rivals come out of the Apollo Stakes and the exception is Libran. Punters Intelligence reveals her 33.02 last 600m split was four lengths quicker than the next best in the race and her last 200m of 11.20s was 2.5L superior. It’s a glorious sight when she flattens out. Not sure there is much more to add. Times and margins please officials.
The placings: Normally I’d throw out a tip for the Winx Out market when the mare goes around so we can still try to make a buck from the race but 1. Happy Clapper has a stranglehold on that market at $1.35. And rightly so. He looks certain to run second yet again to Winx after sitting outside of the lead first up. He was softened up but love the way he kept finding the last 200m. Perhaps play a straight trifecta with 7. Unforgotten to run third. She was deceptively good first up running the fastest 800-600 and 600-400 splits in the race (Punters Intelligence) before feeling the pinch late.
How to play it: STRAIGHT TRIFECTA 5,1,7
Winx winning the Apollo Stakes
|Race 7 - 4:20PM SURROUND STAKES (1400 METRES)|
It’s easy to be seduced by the backmarker with the big flashing light on them but thought 12. Pohutukawa’s run was so superior to anything else in the Light Fingers first up, from a second up 1400m perspective, that I just have to be with her. Punters Intelligence highlights that her last 600m split of 33.07s was two lengths superior to any of her rivals and that was despite the jockey having to change course in the straight to find clear running. That 600m split was second to only Winx on the day. Drawn to settle midfield, if she reproduces that first up effort she’ll gobble these up like she did at Flemington second up out to 1400m in the spring.
Dangers: 8. Miss Fabulass wasn’t suited the way the Light Fingers was run, she was out the back and despite finishing ninth, her last 600m of 33.28s was second to only Puhutukawa. Can’t get out of my head her stinking it up in the Furious before winning the Tea Rose at double figure odds. Getting a sense of deja vu. The draw ensures she’ll settle out the back again. Expect 14. Zalatte to put her name up in lights. She’s on an Oaks path but she’s still good enough to win this. 4. Fiesta is always thereabouts. She’s too honest to discount and her return win at Warwick Farm was outstanding. The barrier forces Hugh Bowman’s hand to go back though? 7. Nakeeta Jane of course in the mix again. Her tactical speed will again be hugely advantageous.
How to play it: Pohutukawa WIN ($4.60 TAB Fixed Odds)
Pohutukawa's last 600m in the Light Fingers was only bettered by Winx on the day!
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) February 27, 2019
|Race 8 - 5:00PM GUY WALTER PROVEN THOROUGHBREDS STAKES (1400 METRES)|
4. Bella Martini has raced without luck for some time now. The wide draw cost her any chance of winning first up, having to jag back to last in a frantically run race. She ripped home though, running the fastest splits all the way from the 600m home. Not easy first up. Punters Intelligence reveals her last 600m was 33.28s, and two lengths faster than the next best in the race. There is nowhere near the speed engaged here so imagine Tommy Berry rolls forward to take up a spot before blending into the race turning for home. The mare has shown in the past she is just as capable winning from the front as she is being ridden cold. Like her form reference through Osborne Bulls and Land Of Plenty last campaign.
Dangers: 2. Noire found 1200m too sharp in the Southern Cross but she certainly wasn’t disgraced. Her late splits there bode well for 1400m second up. Her second up record is outstanding too (4:3-1-0). She’ll be in the finish, no doubt about it. 1. Dixie Blossoms wasn’t as dynamic at the backend of last campaign but the best two runs of her last two preparations have been first up. There’s a good race in 12. Dyslexic over the autumn. She was scratched from the Millie Fox last week due to the wet track. Has trialled brilliantly. 9. Manicure is racing at the top of her game but is well found.
How to play it: Bella Martini EACH WAY ($9 TAB Fixed Odds)
Bella Martini hitting the line in the Triscay
|Race 9 - 5:40PM NELUNE FOUNDATION HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
This is a perfect second up assignment for 3. Maximus. I’m a subscriber to horses running to patterns and the way this galloper won second up last time in, off a very similar return, says to me he can only run well here. He missed by a whisker at Rosehill first up behind All Too Royal. He went down narrowly to Soothing first up last campaign before tackling the Randwick 1200m, which is what he faces here, on a Good deck and won comfortably. Drawn soft in a race without a great deal of speed on paper, have him settling third the fence. Has to be in the finish somewhere so each way odds is a great gamble. He’s the bombproof option in this, more than we can say for his biggest danger.
Dangers: There is no denying 8. Renewal’s talent but his nasty habit of missing the kick cost him any chance of winning races last campaign. He won’t want to dawdle out of the barriers here over 1200m from the wide draw. The four-year-old trialled sweetly at Rosehill, and looked to get away fine. Still want to see him do it on race day before supporting him. This is certainly a winnable race for him though. 2. Serene Miss is just a deadest winner. She has won six from eight and although resumes from a layoff, her record doesn’t allow me to discount her. 10. What Could Be is a smokey to rattle home and provide some joy for exotics punters.
How to play it: Maximus WIN ($6 TAB Fixed Odds)
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) February 28, 2019