By Neil Evans
Track Good 4 and rail true so should play on-pace early before levelling out
|Race 1 BM 64 HCP (2100m):|
We start our farewell to 2019 meeting with an intriguing and tactical staying battle in a small field. Promising 4YO Warwick Farm mare 2. Lady Highly progressed nicely at just her fourth start charging over the top to easily win a Class 1 at Wyong, and while she goes up 4kg, looks a Saturday winner in the making, and can park close enough if this turns into a sit-and-sprint affair.
Dangers: The best is still yet to come from 6YO mare 3. Joe's Joy who is better than her record from 33 starts suggests. Runs in often tougher company have been mixed, but finished hard at Kembla behind Kiss The Bride who has since won again, and draws the inside. Improving 4YO Newcastle mare 4. Miss Fialka looks the only other chance after finishing well behind a handy galloper this grade on the Beaumont track.
How to play it: Lady Highly to win. Odds and Evens (First 2): Split
|Race 2 MAIDEN HCP (1200m):|
Tricky maiden where the market will be a huge indicator with a few first starters. After only a fair debut on this track as a well backed favourite in a smart field, 3YO Rosehill filly 7. Hyannis Port was sent back to the trials, and responded with a smart win tracking the pace before cruising through along the inside. Better for the experience, and draws the inside gate.
Dangers: Randwick filly and first starter 8. Le Gai Soleil (Tavistock x Night Danza by Danzero) is a fascinating cross by the recently deceased prolific NZ staying sire out of a former Golden Slipper winner. Has trialled okay and draws well. Improving 3YO Warwick Farm gelding 1. Seberton has been hard in the market finishing okay in two runs to start his career, and can go close with the blinkers going on, and leading senior rider engaged. Another well-bred 3YO filly from the Godolphin production line, cleverly named 6. Exact Replica (Exceed And Excel x Copy by Street Cry) has had two progressive trials but likely to find this a tough challenge from a wide gate; while stablemate filly 10. Kennebec can improve sharply at third start after a poor run at Hawkesbury.
How to play it: Hyannis Port each way and box exacta 1,7,8. Odds and Evens: Split.
|Race 3 BM 64 HCP (1600m):|
Another strong tactical battle over the mile, with a stack of hopes. Wyong 6YO mare 4. Ondo Pasa goes up sharply in weight, but only has to hold his form to go close after sailing home from the back to beat a handy BM 64 field at Wyong in his only try over the mile before again finishing hard along the inside from midfield to just miss in stronger BM 78 metro grade.
Dangers: Expect natural improvement second-up from 4YO Rosehill mare 7. Peace Of Mind who did her best work late resuming at Wyong, and won her only previous run second-up. Watch the market closely on 3YO Randwick filly 8. Money Magic who fought on hard to win on debut at Kembla, and while this is a sharp step up in grade, she's been freshened and is bred to get over plenty of ground. Tough 8YO Wyong gelding 2. Hammond Lane has been up for a while, and was rewarded when gripping on to win the Mudgee Cup at double figure odds. Carries his biggest weight in a while from a wide draw, so has the job ahead. Another staying veteran heading into his 72nd start, Warwick Farm 9YO 3. Hirokin was unwanted in betting, but nearly snatched the Mudgee Cup second up after coming over from a wide draw to trail the speed, and gets a 2kg claim over his pet distance.
How to play it: Ondo Pasa each way and first four 4,7/2,3,4,7,8/2,3,4,7,8/2,3,4,7,8. Odds and Evens: Split.
|Race 4 CLASS 1 HCP (1000m):|
Looks a lovely follow-up race for 3YO Randwick filly and impressive debut winner 2. Circus who rounded them up easily at Newcastle, and draws to repeat the dose, stalking the speed all the way.
Dangers: Drawn right alongside, smart colt 1. Warfare resumes off a nice trial for top juvenile yard. Took on smart opposition as a 2YO, and only win so far came at third start on this track. Hawkesbury filly 3. Islands resumes from the inside gate, and is clear best of the rest.
How to play it: Circus to win, quinella 1 and 2, and trifecta 1,2/1,2,3/1,2,3. Odds and Evens: Split.
Circus wins on debut at Newcastle on December 7
|Race 5 3YO MAIDEN PLATE (1000m):|
Plenty of chances again over the five furlong dash. Keen on Godolphin's 1. Cathars who hasn't raced for more than 11 months, but took on top 2YO company last time, and looks well prepared off two smart trials returning as a gelding.
Dangers: Hard to believe talented 4. Covert Ops is still a maiden after six starts, but after going close in a few runs in good 2YO winter company, he also resumes as a gelding off a good trial, and bound to be in the finish. Nicely bred Warwick Farm filly 10. Diddles looks well placed after fighting on hard from the front at Wyong in only her second start.
How to play it: Cathars to win and quinella 1 and 3. Odds and Evens: Split.
|Race 6 MAIDEN PLATE (1600m):|
Up to the mile again for the maidens at set weights, and 3YO Randwick gelding 9. The Snooperstar is hard fit now, and bursting to break through after three runs this prep. Loomed to win at Hawkesbury before just missing out, and the wide draw is the only real query.
Dangers: Improving 3YO Warwick Farm filly 10. Zounate is also close to breaking through in her first prep. Disappointed as a hot favourite at Orange before run down in the last stride at Hawkesbury, and while he also jumps from a wide barrier, form apprentice takes 2 kg off. Liked the way 3YO Randwick gelding 8. Somnus finished off in that same race at Hawkesbury second-up, and if he can find some early cover from an awkward draw, will be charging into the finish. Watch the market on 4YO gelding 5. Sayl who has talent, but done plenty wrong in a mixed prep in Victoria, twice seemingly throwing the race away with bad race manners. Leading stable switches states, with the blinkers coming off. Rosehill filly 14. Southern Spirit has shown steady improvement up to the mile in three runs to start her career, and draws a lovely trailing gate.
How to play it: The Snooperstar to win and trifecta 8,9,10/5,8,9,10,14/5,8,9,10,14. Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 7 BM 64 HCP (1200m):|
Competitive finish, but resuming 4YO Warwick Farm gelding 1. Superbowl Sunday looks very nicely placed off two forward trials on a track that suits his forward pattern. Won first-up last prep over the same trip, and gets a handy 2kg claim.
Dangers: Progressive 3YO Godolphin gelding 15. Mercury finished well to win his maiden third-up at Kembla, but very disappointing next start in this grade, although the winner is smart and has since won again. Lightly raced 3YO Randwick gelding 14. Invincible Dash has been held together in two trials, but may be in search of the run from a wider draw.
How to play it: Superbowl Sunday to win. Odds and Evens: Odds.
Superbowl Sunday's latest trial at Hawkesbury on December 16