By Neil Evans
Track is rated a Heavy 9 after 12mls of rain in the last 24hrs - the rail is out 3m.
|Race 1 (2:20pm) STUD & STABLE STAFF AWARDS PLATE (1200M)|
We start on a rain-affected track with the three-year-old boys at set weights. Improving colt 2. Beachhaven ($3.60 favourite on TAB) has had four weeks since working home fairly first-up in a similar maiden here. Improves over a bit more ground.
Dangers: Improving 4. Deliberation ($7) is down in weight four weeks after a fair country debut as an odds-on favourite.
How to play it: Beachhaven to win
Odds and Evens: Evens
|Race 2 (2:55pm) HYLAND RACE COLOURS PLATE (1200M)|
Now the fillies edition and it's a much trickier, albeit potentially strong affair. Looking forward to the debut of 1. Adulting ($3.20) off a couple of eye-catching trials, ridden out in the second to make up plenty of late ground on a Soft 7. By dual Group 1 winner Contributer out of a Street Cry mare so should get through this ground.
Dangers: Progressive Godolphin filly 7. Flexible ($2.50 fav) defied her big price powering home to miss by a head second-up here a fortnight ago on a Soft 7. Drawn to get similar cover and being by Group 1 winner and unbeaten heavy track specialist Hallowed Crown, you would feel the wetter the better. Big watch on Hinchinbrook filly 2. All That Sass ($5) second-up, with blinkers on and down in weight off a handy debut at Newcastle. Expect a different 4. Big Angel ($7) resuming off a smart trial win in soft ground. Blew the start on debut back in August when backed from $6 into $4.20, and by another top-notch wet track sire in Zoustar. Watch the betting on Sou Think filly 8. Good Omens ($7.50) on debut for top stable after emerging from the pack to win that trial holding off Adulting.
How to play it: Adulting to win and quinella 1 and 7
Odds and Evens: Odds
|Race 3 (3:30pm) SCHWEPPES HANDICAP (2200M)|
The stayers get their turn and typically there are many chances. Love the value about tough 7YO 6. Shadow Flight ($8) who is screaming for this longer journey after making up plenty of late ground in his last couple. Drops back to mid-week class and won his only previous start on a heavy surface.
Dangers: Lightly raced mare 8. La Grisa ($3.60) is a threat third-up with winkers applied. Produced an enormous first-up run in a similar race here coming from a mile back before afforded little or no chance well back in a tougher Sat race. Yet to win, though, in six starts on soft or heavy ground. Inconsistent six-year-old 2. Kaapfever ($3.40 fav) failed to run home in a deeper Saturday race but returns to his home track where he finished hard to miss narrowly in a similar race to this. Blinkers go back on as does a 2kg-claiming jockey. Muswellbrook 6YO 3. Yuralla Boy ($8) was a dominant provincial BM 64 winner before chasing home a tougher stayer in a similar race at Newcastle. Gets in well at the weights after a 3kg claim, but query in this company on a heavy track. Good four-year-old 1. Secretly Awesome ($6) has plenty of ability but query the sharp step up in distance on a likely heavy track. Scored convincingly two runs back at provincial BM 64 level before flat late this grade on the Kensington Track.
How to play it: Shadow Fight each way
Odds and Evens: Evens
|Race 4 (4:05pm) IMPENDING @ DARLEY HANDICAP (1100M)|
Now for the three-year-old and up sprinters. Smart Godolphin four-year-old 3. Deference ($2.60 fav) should have won here second-up when he had trouble getting clear before savaging the line to miss by under a half-length. Peaks now in the ground he likes and drawn to get plenty of cover.
Dangers: Provincial mare 6. Night Flyer ($6.50) resumes off a tidy trial and both career wins from 11 starts have come in heavy ground. Honest 7YO 1. Accelerato ($7.50) hit the line hard resuming in that same race as the top selection, normally holds his form into the next run and relishes wet ground, while improving 3YO 8. Dance ($4.60) won first-up for the new stable and down in weight for this harder test.
How to play it: Deference to win and trifecta 3/1,6,8/1,6,8
Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 5 (4:40pm) ANZ BLOODSTOCK NEWS HANDICAP (1200M)|
The girls three-year-old and up lock horns in what will be a tricky and wide betting race. Going out in the market with Hawkesbury four-year-old 7. Vulpine ($6 - pictured below) who is fifth-up and dropping back in class. Has been finishing off her races well enough and last prep finished strongly into a place on heavy ground behind a couple of smart sprinters.
Dangers: Progressive four-year-old 3. Brazen Gem ($3.50) was caught wide in a stronger race at Randwick but kept finding the line. Drawn much better here and back to a more suitable race, but shoots up 4kg.
Loved the first-up closing effort of four-year-old 5. Irish Angel ($3.10 fav) who enjoys rain-affected ground, but hasn't fired a shot yet second-up.
Lightly raced Hawkesbury four-year-old 9. Grace Bay ($8) steps into tougher metro grade at the right time after consecutive wins this prep, the latest at Nowra in the Belle Of the South.
How to play it: Vulpine each way and trifecta 3,7/3,5,7,9/3,5,7,9
Odds and Evens: Odds a special
|Race 6 (5:15pm) VINERY STUD HANDICAP (1600M)|
Over the mile we go for the four-year-olds and up. Longer-priced Wyong five-year-old 9. Commander Bell ($6) finished hard at drifting double-figure odds in a provincial BM 68 and the third horse then won a BM 72 here late last month. Drops 2kg coming to town and handles rain-affected going.
Dangers: Improving six-year-old 1. Night Of Power ($2.50 fav) just missed resuming as a gelding at Kembla before becoming unsettled in the run at Canterbury. Drops back to a thinner race from a better draw and will be hard to beat if he handles the conditions. Expect sharp improvement third-up from five-year-old 6. Mubariz ($5.50) who struck trouble resuming and then got well back next start, yet found the line okay both times and will relish this longer trip. They took the blinkers off four-year-old 2. Get The Idea ($4.20) last start here and he went close. Should find a similar position from the good gate and while he has won in heavy going, can be hard to catch.
How to play it: Commander Bell each way and box trifecta 1,2,6,9
Odds and Evens: Split
|Race 7 (5:50pm) TAB HANDICAP (1300M)|
We close with the three-year-olds and up and it doesn't get much easier. Talented three-year-old 16. Blondeau ($4.40 equal fav) hit the line to miss by a nose in a deeper race in his first run here since switching back from a Victorian campaign, and his only win so far was second-up.
Dangers: Progressive four-year-old 2. Escaped ($4.40 eq fav) will be hard run down on a surface he likes after sticking on well resuming on the Kensington Track, while four-year-old 12. Snitzify ($7.50) missed by a whisker resuming in a BM 64 at Newcastle and has solid enough wet track form.
How to play it: Blondeau to win
Odds and Evens: Evens
R2 1. ADULTING
R4 3. DEFERENCE