By Ray Hickson
Tips and race by race preview by Ray Hickson for Wednesday’s Anzac Day meeting at Royal Randwick. The track is rated a good 4, and the rail is in the 9m position.
|Race 1 – 12:45PM LIGHT HORSE BRIGADE PLATE (1400 METRES)|
The wide open spaces at Randwick (even with the rail out 9m) should suit 3. Stone who has been runner-up at Gosford and Wyong at his last couple. Lost the compass around the 400m at Wyong last start, running wide and it took quite a while for him to balance up and hit the line. He closed strongly late to get very close to the winner. Any rain wouldn’t bother him as he ran fourth on debut on a heavy and has placed twice on soft 5s. Good chance.
Danger: 8. Stock Up is on the back up after running fourth on the Kensington track last week as favourite. I thought she had her chance there but she was second-up and she kept coming so there’s probably some improvement to come from her. The trip will suit her too as she’s run second on a heavy 9 at 1400m. Worth another chance. 4. Stryke Rock had been all around the placings without cracking it prior to a close second at Rosehill back on Easter Monday. First go beyond 1200m this time in and drawn the inside so expecting him to have his chance. 7. Sazavee comes through the same race as Stock Up where she was unwanted in betting at $71 but stuck on bravely after challenging off a three wide run. She’ll likely have an easier passage here and has to be included.
How to play it: Stone E/W ($4.00 TAB Fixed Odds).
Stone makes a late dive to just fail at Wyong on April 12
|Race 2 - 1:20PM ARMISTICE PLATE (1200 METRES)|
3. Danawi is a big watch on debut. He’s a very well bred colt out of a top class Group 1 winning mare and his only trial appearance was an outstanding win at Rosehill on April 6. Keep a good eye on the betting and if he’s solid he’ll take plenty of beating on what he showed in that one public appearance.
Dangers: 2. Coterie attracted support on debut to start $2.30 and while beaten she wasn’t disgraced as she ran home strongly late into a clear second place. That was 1000m and the extra trip seems up her alley. Keep in mind. 10. The Autumn Sun has been around for a while at the trials, winning three of his four, and hopefully he steps out this time as he’s displayed some talent. The latest was a strangely run trial where they got to the outside of the track over 742m and he was a bit too strong late. 7. Pembroke Castle has trialled well on two occasions since his nice third in the Inglis Classic in February. With the more fancied stablemate coming out he commands a bit of respect.
How to play it: Danawi WIN ($2.70 TAB Fixed Odds).
Danawi's easy barrier trial win at Rosehill on April 6
|Race 3 – 1:55PM UNCONQUERED PLATE (1200 METRES)|
I think 4. Colombina has the form on the board to be the horse to beat in the fillies division. Drifter in betting first-up and ran on well behind the smart Pure Elation then again a bit soft in the market and only narrowly failed to catch Gem Son two weeks ago. Punters Intel revealed her last 600m was the quickest of the race in 34.78. She can’t draw a barrier at the moment so will probably drift back but expecting her to be finishing it off full of running.
Dangers: 5. Eawase didn’t have a lot of luck back in January running fourth to Futooh and her two trials back have been sound, perhaps the first a bit better than the second though that second trial was run in very fast time. She should run well here fresh. 11. Separated is on debut after two trials and she was particularly dominant in winning at Randwick a month ago. That’s the only minor concern that there’s been that gap between a trial and this race. But, drawn well and if there’s confidence around she’s a good chance. 6. Galina went around at $11 in the Gimcrack Stakes at her only start and she did a fantastic job in running fifth after getting right back near last in the run. Not asked for a lot in her one trial this time in (she had a couple in December but didn’t race) and is worth keeping safe.
How to play it: Colombina WIN ($3.40 TAB Fixed Odds).
Colombina running a close second at Warwick Farm on April 11
|Race 4 – 2.30PM BATTLE OF AMIENS HANDICAP (1600 METRES)|
I see no reason to steer away from the promising 8. Velocita who, with the aid of a very good ride, was able to down subsequent Melbourne winner Savacool when resuming at Rosehill earlier this month. The mile holds no fears, she’s drawn well so should get another nice ride and she stays in the same class with only the standard 2kg penalty for winning. Hard to go past her.
Dangers: 2. Hussterical was very game in defeat second-up at Warwick Farm as she held off all challengers until Resin stormed down the outside. Goes straight to the mile here and that’s the only small issue but she is a Waterhouse/Bott product so perhaps there are no fears there. She’ll give a sight at very least. 3. Mariquita ran on well without really threatening at Warwick Farm two weeks ago and steps to the mile for the third time in her career. Failed in both previous attempts but one was on a heavy 10 and the other was in a Group 3 event. Each-way claims. 4. Jaunty is a very interesting runner resuming at a mile with no public trials so is hard to line up. She was runner-up over this course back in January and while drawn wide I wouldn’t be leaving her out if she lines up.
How to play it: Velocita WIN ($2.40 TAB Fixed Odds).
Velocita’s impressive first-up win at Rosehill on April 2
|Race 5 - 3:10PM INVICTUS SPRINT (1000 METRES)|
3. Malahat picks himself here for mine. Talented three-year-old resuming as a gelding and his last three starts have been respectable efforts in stakes company. Started favourite when beaten two lengths by Viridine three starts back and last time out was $201 when 3.4 lengths from Merchant Navy in the G1 Coolmore in Melbourne. First trial was solid and he was strangled in the second. Drawn ideally and has enough speed to make some use of it to be not too far away. Hard to beat.
Dangers: 2. Misery is a lightly raced five-year-old having his first run for Bjorn Baker. You generally have to be Saturday class to win a Class 6 in Brisbane and he’s done that and was competitive in his last two starts over the short course last season. Trial win at Gosford was okay and the betting will be a guide to confidence. 7. Rose Of Man has had a freshen up since failing on a heavy track at Gosford a month ago and if you ignore her last two she’s right in this contest. Downed Tip Top over this course on New Year’s Day and any kind of repeat of that effort holds him in good stead for this. 6. Hillary Step hasn’t raced since an all the way win at Canterbury back in February over 1250m. She’s a speedy customer and who should lead, or be right there, and she could take some running down.
How to play it: Malahat WIN ($2.50 TAB Fixed Odds).
Malahat has a quiet second trial at Warwick Farm on April 9
|Race 6 - 3:45PM ANZAC DAY CUP (1800 METRES)|
Wide open race and one that doesn’t look to have a lot of speed engaged on paper. Despite that 10. Dubaiinstyle goes on top on the back up after a late closing third on the Kensington track last week. He was back from 1600m to 1550m there with a month between runs so stepping up to 1800m is ideal. Doesn’t win out of turn but this looks a winnable race for him and is a good each-way chance at least.
Dangers: 1. Etymology had the confidence boost he sorely needed when he found a set weights C1 race at Moruya and duly smashed his rivals. His 85 rating means he still carries 59kg back in the city but he was shaping up well with his first two runs back in similar grade. Hard to be confident but maybe he’s turned the corner. 2. Karavali disappointed in the Epona a month ago but she did have some excuses after being tightened up in the straight. It didn’t cost her a place though. Too good in a Group 3 against a similar field to that over the Randwick mile prior and she’s entitled to another chance. 3. Drochaid caught the eye first-up then too good on a heavy track beating Dubaiinstyle at Gosford. He’s had a tick over trial since and is hard to leave out of the chances. Big watch also on 5. Aaraja, an imported mare with Chris Waller who was asked for zero in her only trial recently.
How to play it: Dubaiinstyle E/W ($6.50 TAB Fixed Odds).
Dubaiinstyle runs home strongly from last at Randwick last Wednesday
|Race 7 - 4:20PM BEERSHEBA HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
I don’t want to over think this race as I, like many, believe 6. Cradle Mountain is a real up and comer and just want to stick with him. He’s been taken through the grades out of town and hasn’t raced since he broke the 1200m track record at Kembla Grange back on January 3. He was brilliant winning his trial at Warwick Farm and he looks ready to go. There is a bit of competition for the lead do it’ll be interesting to see if he finds it or has to work, or can take a sit just off them from a handy gate. Regardless, he’ll take beating.
Dangers: 8. Beacon has some juicy form lines from his last appearance in the spring where he fought off Marsupial before succumbing to the late finish of Unforgotten. He’s had the two trials since and didn’t really stand out in either but can race handy and is one you don’t want to be treating lightly. 5. Smartedge is no slouch either and he won nicely fresh last time in before being nailed in the last stride here on New Year’s Day. Wasn’t quite up to the Magic Millions and not taking much notice of his trial as the stable rarely gives them a hard trial at Rosehill. Drawn to get the perfect run and is a chance to blouse them. 13. The Passage is an ex-Victorian now with the Snowden stable and he has a couple of trials under his belt. Showed ability down south, drawn well and it wouldn't surprise to see him feature somewhere.
How to play it: Cradle Mountain WIN ($2.70 TAB Fixed Odds).
Cradle Mountain’s very easy trial win at Warwick Farm on April 9
|Race 8 - 4:55PM LAST POST HANDICAP (1400 METRES)|
2. Chapelco was responsible for an enormous performance at Warwick Farm two weeks ago where he ran fourth behind Good Weather. He was caught in a speed battle with a few other horses but had the fortitude to fight on and was only swamped inside the last 100m. Punters Intel showed his first 100m was 7.57 (fastest), then ran 10.66, 10.56 and 10.90 for the next three 200m splits. He was back from a mile to 1300m there so the 1400m here suits and if it hasn’t knocked the stuffing out him then he should have less competition on the speed and have a good chance to break through.
Dangers: 5. Grand Finalist will probably lead with the blinkers on first time and he started $2.20 favourite in a mile event two weeks ago won by Higher Ground and he was softened up a fair bit there too. Whether the mile finds him out we’ll find out this time around but he’s the logical threat. 8. Bright Future also comes through the same race as Chapelco and he ran up to the support he had at each-way odds closing into second place. Sure to get a nice run from the inside alley and as I’m expecting the form to hold up with Chapelco he’s one of the chances too. Ditto for 3. Pure Rebel who finished third in the Warwick Farm event. He made his run along the fence from last and while he’ll likely concede a start again off another wide alley he’s an each-way hope.
How to play it: Chapelco E/W ($5.00 TAB Fixed Odds).
Chapelco’s game fourth at Warwick Farm, with Bright Future and Pure Rebel also featuring, on April 11