By Ray Hickson
Tips and preview by Ray Hickson for Friday night’s eight race Canterbury Park meeting. Quite a strong program, the track is expected to be good and the rail is in the true position.
|Race 1 – 6:15PM TAB.COM.AU HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
Intriguing two-year-old race with plenty of handy trial form to dissect. Whether that makes it easier or harder is debatable. 8. Membrillo has done more than enough in her two trial appearances to suggest she can be competitive from a nice easy gate. She should be able to land in the box seat if she doesn’t take it up. The Godolphin youngsters have been performing well in the early part of the season and she looks a professional type. Can’t be super confident but expecting her to perform.
Dangers: 10. Sweet Ava is a full sister to top colt Menari and like him has won two trials leading into her debut. She sat outside the lead in the first then box seated in the second but I’m not sure where she gets to from a tricky alley. Regardless she looks to have ability and has to be kept safe. 6. Diamondsandjewels was beaten over six lengths in her trial at Randwick late last month but it was only a 740m scamper and she attacked the line quite well late. Wouldn’t surprise to see her show something over the longer trip. 2. Fun Fact you’d expect will press forward given he has trialled without blinkers on both occasions and wears them here. No knock on his trials and he’s in the mix.
How to play it: Membrillo WIN ($2.80 TAB Fixed Odds).
Membrillo running second in her latest trial at Warwick Farm – December 5
|Race 2 - 6:45PM #THERACES HANDICAP (1550 METRES)|
I think the early market has this race right with 5. Savacool favourite but not too short. He was unwanted in betting on debut but proved too strong then in a small field around this course he made a late charge after getting across the winner’s heels 200m out. There looks to be a bit more pressure here and she’s better off at the weights. Looks a nice horse on the way up and expecting her to be hard to beat.
Dangers: 1. Destiny’s Own was the winner of that race over Savacool and while he has that weight turnaround against him he’s flying this time in. He won’t have to lead this race as he did last start and that might suit him even better. Hard to ignore. 4. Seaway could still prove to be the best horse out of this race but I have a couple of concerns about him. Arrogantly ridden when winning over 1250m at Canterbury almost a month ago but was supposed to run at Warwick Farm last week only to be scratched due to a leg laceration. So he has blinkers off and up in trip with the outside gate. May be good enough to overcome it but he’s easy to find negatives for. 3. Kurnel Jaxon is coming through the grades out of town in fine style and though aided by an on pace pattern at Goulburn he’s well worth including.
How to play it: Savacool WIN ($3.10 TAB Fixed Odds).
Destiny’s Own and Savacool’s clash at Canterbury – December 1
|Race 3 - 7:15PM TAB REWARDS HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
You never like to make a lot of big statements in race previews but I think there’s a false favourite in this race and it’s hard to make a case for it being so short. For mine, Chris Waller really holds the key to this race and I was really taken by the latest trial of 7. Toryjoy. She was always on the paceand appeared to be doing it easily as she edged away to win by just under a length. You can see for yourself in the video below. She was way over the odds early and is a good each-way chance if she can run up to the trial.
Dangers: 6. Press Review is another that trial watchers would have taken notice of out of her close fourth at Rosehill a week ago. She was going easily in behind those fighting out the finish and no doubt could have won if desired. She’s a half sister to Press Statement in the same stable and bears close watching. Also over the odds. 5. Ombudsman didn’t do a lot at his debut back in September but has been gelded since and has two trials under his belt, the latest a nice enough win last week. 3. Dinnigan is favourite but I’d be surprised if she doesn’t drift a bit. She was very plain first-up for 10 months back on October 27 and while she won her trial recently by almost seven lengths it was a 740m scamper. As mentioned I see her as a big risk.
How to play it: Toryjoy E/W ($6.00 TAB Fixed Odds).
Toryjoy wins her latest trial at Rosehill – November 24
|Race 4 - 7:45PM BOOK SUMMER HOPITALITY TODAY SPRINT (1100 METRES)|
A good race but a tough one to work out. 1. Difficult To Get looks foolproof to at least finish top three here with one run under her belt. She did a bit of early work to land third at Wyong and was beaten only by Fanning who had a perfect run inside her. With that under her belt and a gate that should see her have the run of the race it’s hard to see her not featuring in the finish. Go back to last prep and she has form around Memes and Clear The Beach which reads pretty well.
Punters Intel: Difficult To Get worked to run 10.58 between the 800m to the 600 at Wyong last start.
Dangers: 2. Blowing Kisses should be forgiven for missing a place at Rosehill last start after being trapped in no man’s land midfield and off the track. To be beaten only three lengths is respectable and I think coming back that 100m is in her favour. Bumped into Bon Amis before that and with a bit of luck here she can go close. 3. From Within is ex-Chris Waller and you might remember she had a boom on her after winning on debut here on New Year’s Eve then started $4 in the Magic Millions. She showed improvement in her second trial for Edward O’Rourke and it’ll be interesting to see where she gets to from the outside gate. Hard to assess but I’m not counting her out. 5. Geneteau was quite disappointing at Wyong first-up considering her price but did make some ground. Fitter and could improve but is getting costly.
How to play it: Difficult To Get E/W ($4.40 TAB Fixed Odds).
Difficult To Get’s first-up effort at Wyong – November 29
|Race 5 - 8:15PM TAB HANDICAP (1900 METRES)|
Another race where I can’t come into the favourite at the short quote so I’ve gone looking elsewhere and come up with 7. Moqueen but you have to be a bit forgiving. She has had 18 starts now for just the one win but has only been with Chris Waller for this prep. Two starts back she found the line impressively to just miss a place over this course in a solid form race but I’d forgive her Wyong effort where there was a tearaway leader and she just gave up the chase. Interesting jockey change and she can show up at odds.
Punters Intel: Moqueen ran the fastest last 600m of 37.05 in her fourth at Canterbury two starts back.
Dangers: 3. Cordero is quite short for a horse that has missed a place in three runs this preparation. Granted I thought after his first-up run he had a win in him this preparation and this race will be something of a D-Day. He wasn’t disgraced last time out behind Lord Kingsley at Rosehill and this is the easiest race he’s met. Good chance but I’m not rushing in. 6. Blanco Cara is fitter for two runs back from a spell and getting out to the 1900m would be in her favour. Only beaten 0.9 lengths second-up though she did have her chance to dash through – that said she may have gone one paced by then. 2. Lord Macau wasn't suited on the heavy 10 at Warwick Farm last time, does jump sharply in trip but could get some on pace favours.
How to play it: Moqueen E/W ($11 TAB Fixed Odds).
Moqueen’s closing fourth at Canterbury two starts back
|Race 6 - 8:45PM AUSTRALIAN TURF CLUB HANDICAP (1250 METRES)|
I’m happy to go, with a bit confidence, with the favourite here in the lightly raced 7. Brave Song who looks to have found a nice race to blow out the cowbebs. His debut against Calculated was excellent then proved too strong for Sparky Lad also at Canterbury. Sent out $2.60 last start and didn’t perform in a strong BM75 at Randwick before a spell. Takes on older horses but both trials have been very pleasing and with even luck he can win this race nicely.
Dangers: 9. Dixie Chick is a hard mare to catch but she has put two good efforts together now in pretty respectable mares races at this track. Gets the weight relief here with a 5kg drop and is an each-way chance. 8. La Chica Bella was spelled after missing a place for the first time when out to 1800m back in August and with an unbeaten fresh record deserves some thought. Particularly so if she’s firm in the betting and she was beaten narrowly by Noire over this trip in June. 6. Aquatic is a handy horse on his day and definitely a lot better than his first-up effort showed. Forgive it as he had cardiac arrhythmia.
How to play it: Brave Song WIN ($1.85 TAB Fixed Odds).
Brave Song’s second placing in his Randwick trial – November 28
|Race 7 - 9:15PM SCHWEPPES EVENING STAR (1550 METRES)|
This edition of the Evening Star is quite an open one and I’m inclined to again want to go around the favourite a little. Settled on 6. Carluca on the back up from a fair effort at Rosehill last Saturday behind King Darci. Admittedly he had his chance but this is a much more winnable race for him and his precious form was honest at this level. Drawn nicely and Jarrod Austin has found ‘The Gun’ to ride so he gets his chance to be in the finish again.
Dangers: 1. Hunter Jack has the form on the board with a first-up second behind Sedanzer to say he’s the horse they have to beat. And he is the one to beat but a couple of things trouble me to want to take $3.30. He usually runs well fresh but his second-up record is ordinary (8:0-1-1) and he has a wide gate at the tight starting point. If he gets the breaks he’ll be hard to beat but he is no value for mine. 5. Brogue might be looking for a little further about now but he improved nicely second-up over this course in a blanket finish behind Roseito and if he can hold that form he’s an each-way chance. 8. Makeadane made a bit of ground in a race dominanted by the winner at Wyong in an effort much more like his best form and he’s not out of a race like this.
How to play it: Carluca E/W ($3.50 TAB Fixed Odds).
Carluca’s close up third behind Cellarman at Canterbury – November 17
|Race 8 - 9:45PM BOXING DAY AT ROYAL RANDWICK SPRINT (1100 METRES)|
Tough one to finish off with. 4. Fanning isn't really one of my horses but he had the run of the race when breaking through easily at Wyong a couple of weeks back and again appears likely to be afforded a nice passage just off the speed. Competitive in a similar race to this three starts back and has to be considered a good chance without going overboard. Note the runner-up from Wyong goes around in race 4.
Dangers: 6. Viceroy is going to need all kinds of luck go his way from the barrier but he’s raced consistently since joining Luke Pepper including an easy first-up Wagga win last prep. The scratchings have helped his cause and I can’t leave him out. 5. Niccobelle cantered home at Scone third-up clearly appreciating being allowed to roll along untroubled in front. Probably has the chance to lead here if desired and has a genuine chance. 9. Red Extension resumed from a 10 month absence with a solid effort at Gosford. Fitter and will appreciate the extra 100m. Should be running on.
How to play it: Fanning E/W ($4.20 TAB Fixed Odds).
Fanning's easy last start win at Wyong – November 29