By Brad Gray
Tips and race by race preview by Brad Gray for Friday’s meeting at Gosford which includes the Listed Gosford Guineas (1200m) and the G3 Belle Of The Turf Stakes (1600m).
The rail is in the True with the track is expected to race in the Good range.
|Race 1 - 1:25PM NARARA PLUMBING SERVICES BENCHMARK 64 HANDICAP (1600 METRES)|
It’s been rocks or diamonds in 1. Rapido Chaparro’s short career to date. The High Chaparral gelding was first up at Wyong last start after a 45 week break and knocked up to run sixth. He was only swallowed up late and finished three lengths from the winner. That winner, 5. Classic Princess also lines up here but with a 3.5kg swing and the run under his belt, he can turn the tables. He’ll be bowling along out in front for Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott over the Gosford mile and take chasing down. 2. Devil’s Luck, the early favourite here, broke his maiden on the same day as Classic Princess’s win but the overall time was considerably slower.
Dangers: Devil’s Luck was visually impressive last start when finally breaking through but he dictated from in front and zipped home. He'll take plenty of confidence from that soft win but want to bet around him as the early favourite. 8. Northern Lights has upside and looks suited to the extra trip but will give away a start.
How to play it: Rapido Chaparro WIN ($6 TAB Fixed Odds)
Rapido Chaparro first up behind Classic Princess
|Race 2 - 2:00PM THE JACK WARD MEMORIAL BENCHMARK 64 HANDICAP (1000 METRES)|
9. Prophet’s Thumb isn’t hard to find here at the short odds but she does look the winner. She is a three-year-old filly against the older males but she has plenty of upside. She won impressively on debut at Wyong which prompted trainer David Pfieffer to give her a chance in a Listed race but it all came too soon for the daughter of I Am Invincible and she didn’t fire a shot. She was tipped out after that but has resurfaced at the trials and looked sharp, matching motors with Laburnum. She looks to have been kept very sharp ahead of her return and parking in behind the speed for regular rider Corey Brown, she’s the one her rivals will be looking over their shoulder for.
Dangers: 1. Trust Me still has 62kg after the 3kg claim of Mikayla Weir! That’s a lot of weight but the short course specialist has won three from three over the Gosford 1000m, and four of his 10 starts in the past 12 months. He is a 72 rated in a BM64 so deserves the impost. 7. Roman Typhoon has never been short on ability but did too much wrong in his races to win regularly. The winkers went on last campaign and things looked like they would finally click, however he again proved that he is far from the finished article. He’ll likely find the 1000m too short but will be running on.
How to play it: Prophet’s Thumb WIN ($1.80 TAB Fixed Odds)
Prophet's Thumb trialing at Warwick Farm - Dec 11
|Race 3 - 2:35PM PRESTIGE WEDDING AND EVENT HIRE CLASS 2 HANDICAP (1900 METRES)|
Might be going off a start early with 1. Nahuel but he is better than a Class 2 provincial stayer, that we can be sure of. The five-year-old import has won two of his five starts in Australia under Richard Freedman. They were both at Newcastle in a maiden and a Class 1. He was tried in town after that, where backed into favourite, but never looked likely. He’d had enough by then. First up at Canterbury over 1550m he was only getting warm across the line. From 1500m out to 1850m second up last campaign he won by a gap, albeit in maiden grade. Still, it goes some way in demonstrating the improvement you can expect from this horse over the extra trip.
Dangers: 5. Elkano has been steadily building towards another win and think the market is spot on in rating the gelding as the danger to Nahuel. This will be Elkano’s sixth run of the preparation but the first time he has been tried at this trip. It’s a typically patient campaign from Clare Cunningham and the 5.5kg difference in the weights could prove telling. There was plenty to like about the way 2. Battle Zone boxed away first up behind Fuchu over 1400m at Newcastle. Don’t be too critical of his strike rate as Shane Marr has only had him for two starts.
How to play it: Nahuel WIN ($2.30 TAB Fixed Odds)
Nahuel's Canterbury return has merit
|Race 4 - 3:10PM KENTAN MACHINERY METRO & PROV MAIDEN PLATE (1100 METRES)|
The knock on 7. Impurity will be her inability to finally turn a run of close finishes into a maiden win. The five-year-old mare has been sent to the gates 12 times already. However, her last five starts have all been placings. She’s getting close. First up this time in she rocketed to the line behind Evict before running a narrow second to Archedemus, a subsequent 9.3L winner at his next start. In her latest outing she was beaten half a length by $1.60 favourite That Song. There are a couple of rivals here with much bigger names and reputations, hence why we’re getting the early odds we are. She’ll be right there in the money again so each way quote is a luxury.
Dangers: 2. Exceltic is certainly one of those gallopers with a profile. Few would have thought the colt would still be a maiden after he ran so well in the Canonbury on debut as a two-year-old before running second to Santos at Randwick. Yet here we are. He never looked likely last time in, prompting Gary Portelli to try him over 1400m. No trial but he has always looked better than this grade. 10. Quenya chased home subsequent Randwick winner Wonderbabe over 900m first up. The draw makes her task harder but she’ll be hitting the line.
How to play it: Impurity EACH WAY ($9 TAB Fixed Odds)
Impurity and Your Song fighting it out at Gosford
|Race 5 - 3:45PM MERCEDES-BENZ GOSFORD GUINEAS (1200 METRES)|
Very keen on the chances of 4. Military Zone. This three-year-old lost no admirers first up at Randwick chasing home Deprive in what looks a strong form race. Deprive clocked the fastest last 600m split of the entire day in that race. The story that Military Zone’s sectionals told, via Punters Intelligence, was that he peaked on his run. He ran his 600-400m split in 11.39s, the fastest in the race, before flattening out the final 400m. There was a tidy gap back to fourth, which was 2. Dio D’Oro. Last campaign Military Zone took the scalp of Danawi. Here, he should be able to settle much closer from the cosy draw.
Dangers: 9. Rosina Kojonup couldn’t have done much more in her two wins this preparation. She’s never looked like losing at Hawkesbury and then Warwick Farm. This is another step up in grade though and she’ll have company in front from 8. Tell Me and 10. Terminology. Then there’s 6. Hostwin Saturn punching up from the inside and 11. Mornay from a wide draw. We’ll certainly know where the half-sister to She Will Reign stands after this assignment. Was particularly taken with the way Terminology trialled at Warwick Farm. Include her in everything.
How to play it: Military Zone WIN ($2.60 TAB Fixed Odds)
Military Zone chasing home Deprive first up
|Race 6 - 4:20PM GOSFORD RSL BELLE OF THE TURF STAKES (1600 METRES)|
Not yet ready to give up on the Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott-trained 9. Hussterical. She’ll lead this field and now with three runs under her belt, expect Adam Hyeronimus to take no prisoners from the front. The mare was beaten on her merits last start at Randwick but this race sets up perfectly for her – the short Gosford straight and out to the mile. A big drop in the weights certainly helps too. Expect her to pinch a mini break as they turn for home and she’ll take pegging back. She might lack the class of some of her rivals here, there is no denying that, but at the big odds in a very suitable race she is worth a ticket.
Dangers: 8. Organza deserves her shot in this grade. The wet track was the only thing that beat her last start. She's a big show in this. 2. Pecans won this race last year beating Sedanzer but has been plain in her last two runs after winning first up. The blinkers go on to spark her up and she obviously likes the Gosford track. 3. Zumbelina is not without a hope but she looks incredibly skinny at the odds ($2.60). The rank outsider 10. Sweet Victory in this field isn't hopeless either. Her last start effort was better than it reads and the mile suits.
How to play it: Hussterical EACH WAY ($11 TAB Fixed Odds)
Hussterical's last start third behind Sweet Deal
|Race 7 - 4:55PM CENTRAL COAST MARINERS NEW YEARS EVE CUSICK PRELUDE - CLASS 3 HANDICAP (1100 METRES)|
1. All From Scrap looks hard to hold out in Class 3 company. The five-year-old with David Atkins is a pretty handy sprinter and tends to sprint well fresh. He has had two trials to tune up for his return, at Newcastle and Wyong, but wasn’t asked to do a great deal in either, cruising home at the finish. Jason Collett has ridden the son of Henrythenavigator twice in the past, which helps as he doesn’t look the most straightforward ride. Expect Collett to have him worse than midfield before being given his chance to have a final crack at his rivals. All From Scrap is a genuine city class horse on his day and his best is too good for these.
Dangers: 2. Bombarding was never on the track at Doomben last start, coursing a wide trip throughout. He packed up quickly to finish near the tail. Be forgiving of that. This is the right grade for him to bounce back in, having been tried in town for much of his Australian career, being a former Kiwi. Should lead these from the inside draw and get his chance from in front. 5. Anna’s Joy is in the best form of her career and must be respected.
How to play it: All From Scrap WIN ($4 TAB Fixed Odds)
All From Scrap was unlucky not to win at Canterbury first up last prep