By Neil Evans
Track expected Good 4 and Rail out 6m for a very open twilight meeting
|Race 1 MAIDEN PLATE (1800m):|
We open up with a tactical battle over the middle distance. Ultra consistent Godolphin filly 7. La Sagra is bursting to break through. Has attacked the line ridden quieter in her last two, and maps beautifully from the draw and down on 54.5kg.
Dangers: Progressive stablemate 5. Regulation has had two rock-solid provincial runs back finishing right on the winner's heels, and ready for this longer journey. Top metro jockey goes on carrying 1kg less. Randwick filly 6. Bella Violet is a clear value runner after having no luck getting home at Gosford, and while taking on some better ones here, she carries 3kg less. Out of that same provincial maiden, improving colt 4. Don Arcangelo can also figure at fourth run after charging through the middle to miss by a nose.
How to play it: La Sagra to win and first four 5,7/4,5,6,7/4,5,6,7/4,5,6,7. Odds and Evens: Split
La Sagra runs second at Wyong on November 7
|Race 2 MAIDEN HCP (1400m):|
Despite drawing wide, talented Zoustar filly 2. Kiku is the one to beat back on top of the ground second-up off a lengthy break. Fought hard to beat all bar the winner resuming in heavy at Randwick, and before her spell came home well right behind a couple of smart ones.
Dangers: Home track colt 4. Solar Apex resumes off a useful trial; while at bigger odds 3. Skywolf was impressive hitting the line late on debut at Echuca, and gets winkers on for his first run in NSW.
How to play it: Kiku to win. Odds and Evens: Evens
Kiku runs second at Randwick on November 3
|Race 3 BM 68 HCP (1200m):|
A few chances here in a competitive sprint for the 3YO's. Highly capable 2. Saffiano resumes as a gelding for a new stable, off two solid trials, and with blinkers removed. Showed plenty in his first prep, including a Rosehill win at only second start.
Dangers: 1. El Buena continues to make good progress winning his last two. Was heavily backed on the Kensington track charging home from the trail in deeper BM 72 grade, and form rider's 2kg claim crucially off-sets the weight hike. Another one back as a gelding 3. Cultural Amnesia has had two trials, and first prep form was good, bolting in his maiden on the Kensington track. Will go forward from a low draw.
How to play it: Saffiano to win and exacta 1,2/1,2,3. Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 4 BM 72 HCP (1800m):|
Out to the same trip we started over for the older horses. Love the gradual progression shown this prep by 4YO 3. Montserrat who led all the way over the mile at Hawkesbury. More than ready for his city track debut over an ideal fourth-up distance, and gets in well at the weights after jockey's 2kg claim.
Dangers: Talented 4YO 4. Nyami won two straight at the provincials before two handy runs in town. At peak fitness now, and performs on all ground. Canberra 5YO 1. Express Courier was a little flat in the Country Classic here a fortnight back after a string of dominant runs in Federal grade back home. Suspect return to firmer footing is a plus, and can be ridden a bit closer from the draw with top metro hoop booked. Expect sharp improvement fifth run in from Kembla 6YO 2. Cyber Intervention getting back on top of the ground, and was scratched from Kembla on Saturday to run here.
How to play it: Montserrat each way and trifecta 3,4/1,2,3,4/1,2,3,4. Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 5 BM 72 HCP (1500m):|
Back in trip for the males 5YO and Up. Got plenty of time for Gosford-based 5. New Tycoon who arrives in the city at the perfect time after careering away to trounce a handy provincial BM 64 field. Rock hard fit, and should go forward and dictate from the inside gate.
Dangers: Tough 6YO 3. Cisco Bay has been placed in four of his last five in and around this grade, although all five career wins from 28 starts have come in soft going; and Randwick 5YO 4. Come Along can peak fourth-up.
How to play it: New Tycoon to win. Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 6 BM 72 HCP (1500m):|
Same conditions now for the girls 3YO and Up, and it's a much more open affair. Keen on 4YO mare 7. Instant Attraction who has had a little freshen-up with a trial, and draws the inside. Finished well to beat a good field two runs back before flat on the Kensington track, but returning to a firm surface is a big plus.
Dangers: Big finishing and sparingly-raced mare 5. Ruby Tuesday will again be forced a long way back from the outside barrier, but she can sail over the top with decent speed on up front. Flew home to win two back at Hawkesbury before strong late in a deeper race here, and hasn't seen a firm surface in a while. Had to admire the fighting effort of 4YO mare 11. East Asia fourth-up not beaten far at Randwick in heavy going after doing it tough in the run. Previously had charged home to win this grade, and with a better run in transit, is ready for this journey.
How to play it: Instant Attraction each way and box exacta 5,7,11. Odds and Evens: Odds
|Race 7 BM 72 HCP 3YO & Up (1300m):|
We close the card in a similar-graded race for 3YO's & Up, but this time it's all in, and full of chances. Trained on the track, 4YO gelding 10. Dream Circle can snap a run of close placings dropping down a little in grade, and preferred here to Kembla on Saturday. Has been regularly fighting out the finish across BM 78 fields, and draws to get a sweet run on the inside a few lengths off the speed.
Dangers: Improving home track 4YO 8. Rammstein was super tough carting 60.5kg off an eight month spell to win a CL1 first-up at Kembla. This looks a nice follow-up from a soft draw, with leading hoop aboard. Expect a big fresh run from 4YO 6. Papal Warrior who has trialled, and was consistently in and around the money in deeper races last prep. His only win in 12 starts came first-up. Resuming 4YO 5. Snowfire, and 5YO mare 9. Vitesse also off a decent break, are best of the rest and should be included in wider exotics.
How to play it: Dream Circle each way. Odds and Evens: Evens.