By Ray Hickson
Tips and race by race preview by Ray Hickson for Wednesday’s Warwick Farm meeting, plus Grafton's Ramornie Handicap. Selections based on a soft track.
|Race 1 – 12:50PM SKY RACING ACTIVE PLATE (1100 METRES)|
7. Smart Image is showing plenty of talent at the trials, albeit he’s a bit headstrong, and has found a winnable race for his debut. Nicely bred colt who certainly knows how to find the line and if he can be harnessed in the run he should take stopping late.
Dangers: 9. Centimental has good depth of form through a placing to Away Game in February but she’s also been beaten in a maiden so not sure how much emphasis to place on her G3 second. Trial was good behind a race fit horse and has to be respected. 6. Rubamos has trialled twice with Wild Wind, who was a bit wayward in his debut last week, and they put a margin on the third horse in the latest of those in mid-June. Watch betting but no surprise to see him fire. 1. Beyliks was a drifting favourite and appeared to have his chance when beaten here three weeks ago though that was on a heavy 9. Yet to deliver on promise but entitled to another chance with firmer ground.
How to play it: Smart Image WIN ($4.60 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: ODDS.
Smart Image wins a trial at Randwick on June 26
|Race 2 – 1.25PM BOWERMANS COMMERCIAL FURNITURE PLATE (1200 METRES)|
3. Kaptive has looked the part in his two trials, particularly the first where he strode out under a good grip. Safe to say he wasn’t let go at all in the second but you couldn’t have missed him. If he runs up to those trials he will be hard to beat.
Dangers: 5. Celandine had a hard luck story before a spell when a close third in a maiden at Kembla with Opacity finishing just ahead of her. Did it easily in a small field in a Hawkesbury trial and no surprise to see her fighting out the finish. 1. California August ran well on a heavy track first-up then led at Newcastle as an odds-on favourite and was run over out to 1400m. This is start 10 so he’s had a few chances but has shown more than enough to say he can win one of these. 7. Let Me Think made a promising enough debut at Wyong when a drifter in betting and on a day it was hard to make ground. Could get into a place.
How to play it: Kaptive WIN ($2.10 TAB Fixed Odds); Odds & Evens: ODDS.
Kaptive runs fifth in a trial at Rosehill on July 3
|Race 3 – 2:00PM HEADWATER @ VINERY HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
2. Stormy Rock looks a progressive type and you had to be rapt in his dominant maiden win at Kembla a couple of weeks ago. He offset a wide gate quickly and dominated from outside the speed. Up in class but this looks no harder and he can win again.
Dangers: 7. Faraway Jewel may not have been in the preferred going on debut at Hawkesbury but ran out a very easy winner after hugging the rails from last on the turn. Well backed there and does appear to have promise. Good chance. 1. Matowatakpe jumps from 1000m last start where he was grabbed in the last stride at Kembla second-up from a spell. Small query with the extra trip but drawn well and is consistent so include in the main hopes. 3. Bowery Breeze had things go right for him for one and she ran out a nice winner at Kembla though in much slower time that Stormy Rock on the same day. She’s always thereabouts and that’s unlikely to change here.
How to play it: Stormy Rock WIN ($2.40 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: SPLIT.
Stormy Rock wins at Kembla Grange on June 25
|Race 4 – 2:35PM HARRY ANGEL @ DARLEY HANDICAP (1400 METRES)|
1. Kosciusko took control early at Hawkesbury last time and was never really threatened as he ran out an easy winner over 1300m against some of his rivals here. Likely leader again and no reason why he couldn’t repeat that performance.
Dangers: 6. Invinciano is a likely sharp improver on her two runs back on heavy tracks where she hasn’t looked comfortable. Her best form is more than good enough to win this race and if she strikes it then she’s over the odds. 5. Judge Judi generally improves quickly with a run under her belt and she wasn’t disgraced while never threatening here first-up three weeks ago. Extra 200m a plus and she might be closer in the run. Each-way claims. 9. Tapiconic has been around the mark of late and made some ground into second behind Kosciusko. Only slightly better off at the weights but worth including again.
How to play it: Kosciusko E/W ($4.80 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: SPLIT.
Kosciusko wins at Hawkesbury on June 23
|Race 5 – 3:10PM TAB HANDICAP (1300 METRES)|
6. Nicconita needs things to pan out for her as she’s a backmarker but her first-up run at Canberra with 60kg shows she’s come back in good order. Much better suited at 1300m and second-up form is sound, she’s been competitive in this sort of race previously and can be here too.
Dangers: 10. Irish Angel enjoyed a nice run and was able to sprint quickly early in the straight as she broke through at start seven with an easy Canterbury win. She’s a horse that has threatened to go on with it and a firmer track probably helps. Must respect. 3. Joy And Mirth had some hard luck tales through this campaign but it fell into place for her winning well on a heavy 10 at Kembla almost a month ago. Ran well in midfield in a similar race back in May and is in the mix. 11. A Fortunate Lass has been placed in easier races at her last two but might get some on pace favours here and she could find herself placed again at odds.
How to play it: Nicconita E/W ($7.50 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: EVENS.
Nicconita runs third at Canberra on June 19
|Race 6 – 3:45PM ALABAMA EXPRESS @ YULONG HANDICAP (1600 METRES)|
9. Showminder can be forgiven for a second-up defeat on a testing track at Canterbury and will be much better off on a soft track here. Brave win first-up and rarely runs a bad race, though can hit flat spots. Expect him to be on the speed somewhere and giving a good account again.
Dangers: 4. Boomtown Rat is not really a heavy tracker so not being too hard on his two runs back where he has tried hard but been safely held. Winner over this course in January and now he’s back on a soft track expect to see him more competitive. 3. Travancore is on the back up after running a close fourth at Randwick on Saturday and he’s a similar case, he’ll appreciate getting out of the heavy range and in a race that might have a bit more tempo. Wouldn’t leave him out. 6. Seeingisbelieving is a tough on pacer who did a good job to win first-up at 1506m on a heavy track. Has a second to Opacity from February to his name and is rarely far from the action. Each-way claims at least.
How to play it: Showminder E/W ($4.80 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: SPLIT.
Showminder runs third at Canterbury on June 24
|GRAFTON Race 7 – 3:59PM GRAFTON DISTRICT SERVICES CLUB RAMORNIE HANDICAP (1200 METRES)|
2. Snitz is racing in career best form and isn’t badly treated at the weights with 59kg. Too good in the Takeover Target before a brave third to Classique Legend back to 1100m. That’s a very strong form reference, he’s drawn to get every chance and is the benchmark here.
Dangers: 4. Haunted probably should have won this race last year and is back for a second shot with a couple of handy efforts at 1400m at Flemington in June. Solid pace would suit him and wouldn’t be surprised if he avenged 2019. 5. Hightail stacks up well as a big chance ignoring his Stradbroke failure of course. Beat Trumbull three back then won the Gold Coast Guineas in good style. Stable won this race with a three-year-old a few years ago and he is right in the fray. 8. Southern Lad can’t be left out given he beat Snitz home in the June Stakes two runs back. All other starts this prep have been on heavy ground and he’s the type that relishes a fast run race which this should be so that’s his case for inclusion.
How to play it: Snitz WIN ($3.70 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: EVENS.
Snitz runs third at Randwick on June 6
|Race 7 – 4:20PM MAGNA GRECIA NEW TO COOLMORE HANDICAP (1100 METRES)|
7. Valdostana is a promising filly and hard to go past first-up though she is a little on the short side. Just touched out when resuming last time in against some handy fillies and came through the grades well after that. Very quiet trial and she’s the one to beat.
Dangers: 12. Weekend Affair doesn’t win out of turn but his effort first-up on a day it was hard to make ground at Canterbury had merit. This looks a potentially fast run race which would suit and getting back into the soft range is a plus. Knockout chance. 6. Sophiella has been battling a bit on the heavy tracks lately so is another who can improve quickly. Down 5.5kg on last time and in the money in eight of 14 at this trip. Each-way. 8. In Lighten Me won her first two runs back last prep at the provincials and forgive her heavy track failure before a spell. Fitter for two trials and generally an on pacer so barrier not a big deal. Go well.
How to play it: Valdostana WIN ($1.95 TAB Fixed Odds). Odds & Evens: SPLIT.
Valdostana’s trial at Rosehill on July 3