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Neil Evans' Tips For Gosford (Thursday)

By Neil Evans

Track likely slipping back to around Soft 5 and rail true

Race 1 4YO & UP MAIDEN HCP (1000m):

We start with a competitive sprint for the older maidens, and after a near 14-month absence, high class 4YO 3. Sir Rocket returns as a gelding. Has won both lead-up trials in smart fashion, and on debut here last year was only run down late as a hot favourite by Standout who soon after won at Listed level, and then beat Alizee first-up in the Group 2 Expressway in autumn.

Dangers: Ultra consistent Randwick 5YO 1. Shadow Time has run three straight seconds in handy company this prep. Only missed a place once in eight starts, and well in at the weights with a 3kg claim. Randwick mare 5. Pia Sofia draws the inside and can improve second-up.

How to play it: Quinella 1 and 3. Odds and Evens: Odds a special

Race 2 MAIDEN PLATE (1900m):

Out in distance for a battle of tactics and tempo. Capable 3YO filly 9. Wild Irish gets all the favours here down in class fourth-up, and having her first outing at the provincials. Looking for this longer trip now, and appears very well treated under the set weight scale.

Dangers: Liked the way progressive 4YO 1. Oconee found the line second-up at Wyong, and the extra trip should suit. Godolphin filly 8. La Sagra can improve third-up over more ground, with blinkers coming off; while Randwick mare 5. Shadow Girl finished off okay resuming in a handy maiden at Nowra when well backed, and tackled stronger races last prep.

How to play it: Wild Irish to win. Odds and Evens: Odds

Wild Irish runs fifth at Kensington on September 30

Race 3 BM 68 HCP (1900m):

There's a sense of timing around 4YO Randwick mare 4. Satin Rain who has hit the line hard in consecutive BM 64s, and landed the prize fourth-up last prep at this track. Took on Group company in autumn, and looks handily treated under 56kg.

Dangers: Improving Kembla 4YO 1. Tampering didn't get a lot of luck second-up over the mile at home, but has solid form around this longer trip. Local 6YO 3. Highly Desired was disappointing leading in the Bathurst Cup, but blinkers have been removed, and he can hit back ridden a little quieter from the draw. Improving Randwick 3YO 5. Brash Sammy gets blinkers added for this tougher test, and drops sharply in weight.

How to play it: Satin Rain to win. Odds and Evens: Split

Satin Rain runs second at Hawkesbury on September 24

Race 4 CLASS 1 HCP (1200m):

Plenty of chances, but keen on Randwick 4YO 3. Ranges who will roll forward second-up from a low draw. Fitter now after holding his ground resuming in a BM 64 at Kembla when heavily backed, and this track should suit his natural pattern.

Dangers: Emerging 3YO 1. Already Blessed has had two good runs back, and can peak third-up over more ground, with a 1.5kg claim. Promising filly 8. Parachuter draws the inside at third start. Landed a big betting move on debut at Nowra before only even to the line next start, but has since trialled well, and will position right behind the speed. Was scratched from Warwick Farm on Wednesday. Improving Wyong filly 7. Princess Betty never looked like losing after cruising along in front third-up at Newcastle, although meeting some better ones here. Returning 4YO stallion 2. Bovalino is clear best of the rest off two handy trials, and won well fresh on debut in summer.

How to play it: Ranges to win. Odds and Evens: Odds

Race 5 PROV & CTRY MAIDEN PLATE (1100m):

Tough race, with the first starters having a big say. Like the value here about home track debutant filly 10. Hasalake who draws okay, and has been fitted with two trials for a stable renowned for striking early.

Dangers: Plenty hinges on the early speed of Zoustar 3YO filly 13. Never Second who draws wide on debut, but has been taken along gradually at the trials, and looked sharp in her most recent; while 15. Jaytees missed by a nose resuming at Newcastle, and also has good tactical speed.

How to play it: Hasalake each way.

Race 6 MAIDEN HCP (1200m):

Like the fact Godolphin filly 8. Mollycoddle is resuming this time over a longer journey. Both on debut in January and first-up in late April over 1000m, she did her best work late in handy fields. Looked ready to go in a trial win, and can settle back off a solid speed and power home.

Dangers: Randwick colt 1. Falcon is the obvious threat resuming for leading metro stable from a soft draw. Has trialled impressively, and took on some smart ones in his first prep.

How to play it: Mollycoddle to win and quinella 1 and 8. Odds and Evens: Split

Race 7 BM 64 HCP (1600m):

Back out to the mile for a strong battle. Progressive Wyong mare 6. Belle De Vega is primed for this trip after rattling home at Scone second-up from a wider draw carrying 3kg more.

Dangers: Newcastle 4YO 8. Chasing Comets is also crying out for more distance after attacking the line late in his last couple, and well weighted after rider's claim. Fellow Novacastrian 2. French Response will relish a little more ground and significant drop in class after a fair closing effort resuming at huge odds in the Group 3 Tibbie. Randwick 4YO 5. Well Known likes to sit on speed, and much better suited on this tighter track, although still needs to improve on a disappointing record.

How to play it: Belle De Vega each way and trifecta 2,6,8/2,5,6,8/2,5,6,8. Odds and Evens: Evens a special

Race 8 BM 64 HCP (1100m):

Toughest and most open race of the meeting to finish. Lightly raced former Victorian 6YO 10. Traminer is having his first run for 17 months, and on debut for the Snowden yard off two forward trials.

Dangers: Keep safe 4YO 6. Texas Forever who has trialled strongly since a handy closing effort first-up at Kembla. Have to be forgiving of Godolphin mare 11. Bollywood who was very poor resuming at Wyong after being well backed, but second-up record is smart enough; while Scone mare 8. Fritz's Factor second-up; and Randwick 4YO 12. Destiny's Son third-up, are both over the odds.

How to play it: Traminer to win. Odds and Evens: Evens.

All the fields, form and replays for Thursday's Gosford meeting

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