Attempt number two to get Eagle Farm off the ground on Saturday and, if last week was going to be hard, this week is a nightmare. The track copped 123mm of rain in a day last week before the meeting was abandoned. Eagle Farm has dried out very well but now faces a massive ten-race programme with basically capacity fields in each. As we said last week, it would be wise to take things easy early before launching into a full-scale attack.
ROYAL TITHE has been very honest and forget her last start in much harder company. She is well off here at set weights and is effectively drawn in the middle of the field. She has enough pace to be up near the lead with cover.
MY COUNTRY is from a top stable and has been racing very well. She has a lovely draw for her racing style and the form jockey of the carnival.
SUGARPARMA is an honest filly who is also drawn out wide but she has run good races in much better races.
MARGO MAREE is at very big odds but she has a lot of promise. She probably wants to get to 1400m but, from a nice barrier and with a top jockey, she looks the value runner.
SELECTIONS: NO1 ROYAL TITHE, NO9 MY COUNTRY, NO7 SUGARPARMA , NO12 MARGO MAREE. VALUE RUNNER: NO12 MARGO MAREE.
R2 11.20am Wayne Wilson Mile 1600m
RELIGIFY was very good last start after being attacked in the lead most of the way. He is drawn off the track but has the world's best jockey so he should go forward again.
BEWHATYOUWANNABE is perfectly drawn for his racing style and should be able to sit behind the pace to the turn. He loves 1600m and has been most consistent of late.
MALICE has a horror draw but he does get back in his races and should be running home hard again.
AKAVOROUN looked like being in the finish last start but dropped out quickly. He wants a softer track and might get that here.
GHISONI ran very fast time when winning last start and, although a three year old with plenty of weight, she should be hard to beat here. It is a case of class overcoming a bad barrier.
CRADLE ME looks to be well placed here and has been very honest her last few runs. From the inside barrier she will be hard to beat.
TELEPATHIC has a very good record fresh and is a class mare at her best. Another who has the world's top jockey on board in Joao Moreira.
JUST A BLUR caught the eye last start when she finished hard for fourth on a track which suited front runners. She will be much better placed at Eagle Farm.
SELECTIONS: NO3 GHISONI, NO4 CRADLE ME, NO10 TELEPATHIC, NO6 JUST A BLUR. VALUE RUNNER: NO6 JUST A BLUR.
R4 12.30pm Group Two Queensland Guineas 1600m
TOO GOOD TO REFUSE again has a horror barrier draw but that has been the case throughout his career. He has a huge finish so provided he can get to the outside in the straight he will be very hard to beat.
TIVACI was a handy run at his first Brisbane effort when fourth. He looks drawn to get the run of the race here.
SOLD FOR SONG also has a terrible barrier draw and she will have to be ridden back in the field. In shorter races she has a big finish but whether she can reproduce that at 1600m will be the test.
TSARITSA has attracted the attention of some very good judges. This is harder and she is no value but, if the wraps are right, watch out.
SELECTIONS: NO1 TOO GOOD TO REFUSE, NO2 TIVACI, NO15 SOLD FOR SONG, NO17 TSARITSA. VALUE RUNNER: NO15 SOLD FOR SONG.
R5 1.05pm Group 2 QTC Cup 1300m
TARGET IN SIGHT has drawn the rails and has been racing well in much better company. He should get the run of the race and, if there is a good each-way bet on the card, he looks the one.
PERFECT FIT has very good kiwi form and has been working well at the Sunshine Coast. She has claims in a very difficult race.
MISS COVER GIRL looks the best value runner in the race as she drops a lot in weight and has drawn well. It means she can be ridden closer to the pace which has resulted in several of her wins.
SNIPPETS LAND always tries hard and is again drawn to get a nice run. The big question is whether he is a genuine Group Two horse but he gets a chance to prove it here.
SELECTIONS: NO2 TARGET IN SIGHT, NO6 PERFECT FIT, NO15 MISS COVER GIRL, NO 4 SNIPPETS LAND. VALUE RUNNER: NO15 MISS COVER GIRL.
R6 1.40pm Group Two Brisbane Cup 2400m
REAL LOVE has proved she is as tough as they come. She has travelled all over the country but has held her form very well. Her two wins in Brisbane have been commanding and she has worked well at the Sunshine Coast of late. The weight is no help but a few are very close to her in the weights and shouldn't be.
BENZINI is a kiwi who was an eye catcher at his first Brisbane run coming from last to finish third. A repeat of that on the bigger track will see him in the finish.
JUNOOB has been getting fitter with racing and also down in the weights. It is just the sort of race he could win without shocking.
SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD was unlucky at his latest start but hasn't had much racing of late. Still he races best on a light preparation and has an each-way chance.
SELECTIONS: NO3 REAL LOVE, NO8 BENZINI, NO2 JUNOOB, NO5 SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD. VALUE RUNNER: NO5 SIR JOHN HAWKWOOD.
R7 2.20pm Group 1 – J J Atkins Stakes 1600m
SACRED ELIXIR ran a very good trial for this race in the BRC Sires. His last sectional was very good, indicating he wants 1600m and Eagle Farm. Zac Purton was very keen to come back from Hong Kong to ride him.
NIKITAS has worked very well since his third in the BRC Sires. He has always been aimed at this race and he is drawn to race a lot closer here.
DREAMS APLENTY should have nearly won the BRC Sires after the saddle slipped and he ran second. Has a bad barrier but should be able to go forward and nearly lead here.
ATTENTION was very good in winning the Sires and has an ideal barrier draw. He will just need a touch of luck in the straight.
BARBASS has been running well in easier races and might be the best value here.
EAGLE WAY has had the perfect preparation for a Derby. There is a slight doubt about him at 2400m on his breeding but, the way he races, he should relish that.
MACKINTOSH has won his last three and has been very impressive. He is another with a big question mark on him at 2400m but winners are grinners.
HOWARD BE THY NAME is one who is proven as a stayer and he will get a good smother on the rails from his inside barrier. He did fight on well in the straight last start.
BRZAEN is a giant of a horse who has been excellent in his two Derby lead-up runs. Whether he has the class to win a Group One is debatable but he does look to have a good each-way hope.
ENCOSTA LINE has had a setback but the wraps on him are very big. He might be one run short but still looks a value hope.
SELECTIONS: NO7 EAGLE WAY, NO3 MACKINTOSH, NO1 HOWARD BE THY NAME, NO 12 BRAZEN. VALUE RUNNER: NO6 ENCOSTA LINE.
R9 3.40pm Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap 1400m
AZKADELLIA, the favourite, does look very well placed here. She has improved lengths since her Doomben 10,000 second and the stable is known for having its runners ready on the target day. There is no doubt she is better on softer tracks and she should get that here. Her only worry is that she might get caught in traffic in the straight from barrier 5.
MUSIC MAGNATE has done everything right this campaign. He won the 10,000 when he was suited by the breakneck early pace. There is still debate about whether the win was a fluke due to the unusual early race tactics. But he is a horse on the up with a good barrier draw and in-form jockey.
MALAGUERRA has had a most unusual preparation for a Stradbroke. He hasn't run for a month since winning the BTC Cup. But he has had a trial and he is a very good horse when fresh. He got under our guard in the BTC Cup when he looked to have the task.
HOOKED was one of those engaged in a brutal speed battle early in the Doomben 10,000. Connections were furious with the way he was ridden. He had been backed for a stack and will be better suited at 1400m around Eagle Farm.
TAKEDOWN is a three year old who gets into the race very well at the weights. The 1400m might be a worry but he is honest. He looks the best of the roughies.
SELECTIONS: NO5 AZKADELLIA, NO4 MUSIC MAGNATE, NO3 MALAGUERRA, NO10 HOOKED. VALUE RUNNER: NO17 TAKEDOWN.
R10 4.20pm Group 1 Queensland Oaks 2400m
IMPOSING LASS looks a safe way to go each way here. Had no luck when third at her last start and she is much better drawn for this. She is bred to stay the 2400m and should be in the leading bunch most of the way.
DAWNIE PERFECT has had a bit of betting drift in the past week since this race was moved to Saturday. But she is crying out for a big track and 2400m, and she looks the value bet.
AMBIENCE has a horror barrier draw but she has been placed in two other Oaks. Forget her last start because she got knocked rotten on the first turn.
FALKENBERG has had no luck at all at her most recent runs. There is a doubt on her at 2400m but from barrier 3 she will get a cosy run.
PROVOCATIVE has got a run and is a promising filly. But she has had an odd lead up to a 2400m Oaks - a win in a restricted race at Ipswich. The wraps on her are huge so we have to include her.
ASHLEE MARIE looks the best roughie at huge odds. She has been racing very well in the south, has the rails and Damien Oliver to ride. Not the worst here by a long way.