One of the odd things about Brisbane racing is the way the two racetracks handle wet weather. For those who don't know, Doomben and Eagle Farm are split by a road and are effectively 20 metres apart. Lately, though, Eagle Farm has been a bog after a few drops of rain but Doomben is one of the best drying wet tracks in Australia. Doomben is banked and has a sand base, which allows water to drain quickly. There has been rain in Brisbane this week but unless there is a downpour on Friday night or Saturday, Doomben should be in good condition. The rail is in the true position, which means the pattern should be the usual with frontrunners doing well early but backmarkers coming into their own as the day wears on.
This is the best race of the day, with some very promising horses engaged.
MISHANI SLEUTH has been very honest his past few from terrible barriers. This time he has drawn barrier three and has a 2kgs claim. He should get the run of the race here.
BAGUS was a top class two-year-old who put in only one bad run when caught off the track last start in April. She has trialled twice for this. The saddle slipped at her latest trial so you can ignore her sixth pace. She has a 3kgs claim which puts her into this race very well from barrier five.
MYMANCHARLES looked a good thing at Caloundra on Wednesday but was scratched for this. His stablemate won the Caloundra race and she is rated inferior to him by lengths. He landed some nice bets when winning at his only start.
RINGO'S A ROCKSTAR will be the sentimental favourite as he is trained by Norm Stephens, a legend in Queensland who rode the 1948 Stradbroke Hcp winner! But the horse can gallop and won by panels at its last start and has since trialled very well.
TYRANNY has been scratched a few times lately but did trial very well at the Gold Coast, which was strange because he is trained 120km away in Toowoomba. He is well drawn and looks to be the value hope.
SELECTIONS: NO2 MISHANI SLEUTH, NO1 BAGUS, NO6 MYMANCHARLES, NO7 RINGO'S A ROCKSTAR. VALUE RUNNER: NO16 TYRANNY.
R2 12.52pm MT Franklin One Metro Win Handicap 1600m
This is one of many very hard races on Saturday.
DECONSTRUCTED looked to be somewhere back near his best when third at Eagle Farm last start. He got caught in the wrong part of the track but plugged on well and is ready to win now.
His stablemate DESERT GENERAL also got caught on the inside at Eagle Farm when he was third last start. He probably would have nearly won had he been in better going. He is long overdue a win.
BRACTEATE appreciated getting away from Eagle Farm when a good winner at Doomben last start. He is suited here but has a tricky barrier.
ONE INCH PUNCH has been very consistent but has to overcome a bad barrier.
BENTLES has always been highly rated by the stable, who thought he was stakes horse earlier in his career. He ran well first-up and looks a value hope here.
SELECTIONS: NO4 DECONSTRUCTED, NO3 DESERT GENERAL, NO5 BRACTEATE, NO1 ONE INCH PUNCH. VALUE RUNNER:NO7 BENTLES.
R3 1.27pm Jim Beam Open Handicap 1350m
The usual suspects go around here meaning just about any of them can win.
JOPA hasn't had a lot of luck at two runs back from a spell. He likes this track and distance, he likes softish tracks and he has an apprentice's claim here. He looks a good each-way hope.
ANGEL DANCER is as honest as they come and slogged away at Eagle Farm last start when second. She is much better placed at this track and rates highly.
FLAMBOYER has been hammered at the weights for winning one open company race. But he is consistent and likes to roll along in front which he should be able to do here. He is being set for much better races next month.
TOTAL AUTHORITY is another who has been very honest lately. She will probably sit just off Flamboyer and deserves to win in open company. The only worry is if they cut at each other.
PUNTA NORTE can be hard to catch but he was good at Eagle Farm last start as he loomed as the winner before floundering in the mud.
SELECTIONS: NO3 JOPA, NO5 ANGEL DANCER, NO2 FLAMBOYER, NO6 TOTAL AUTHORITY. VALUE RUNNER: NO7 PUNTA NORTE.
R4 2.02pm Canadian Club Benchmark 75 Handicap 1050m
This is also very hard, with some of the main chances drawn in poor barriers or emergencies.
MORNING FOG was scratched from a harder race last week and is suited here, especially if it is on the soft side. She just has a very tricky barrier.
FREQUENDLY is a former top two-year-old who can bob up and win on occasions. She isn't very big but looks okay at the weights.
TISANI TOMSO still has a big weight even after the 3kgs claim but he is well drawn and does go best when he can be ridden up on the pace.
PROMPT RETURN showed some ability in Sydney before winning first start this area at the Gold Coast. He has drawn well and has pace. The stable is going well but he might be under the odds.
ASSERTORY has had a stable switch and was racing well enough before that. She has ability and is well drawn here which is an advantage from this start. A win would not shock.
SELECTIONS: NO11 MORNING FOG, NO9 FREQUENDLY, NO3 PROMPT RETURN, NO1 TISANI TOMSO. VALUE RUNNER: NO 14 ASSERTORY.
R5 2.42pm Coke Open Handicap 2000m
The track rating will play a major role here as horses such as BLACK JAG and BRAVE ALI will be hard to beat on genuine soft going.
However, no matter what the going, PANNO ROSSA (Next Best Bet) looks hard to beat. He won his first open company race last week and has gone up only 1.5 kgs. The fact he won in the inferior going last start at Eagle Farm adds to his effort. Top jockey Jeff Lloyd has stuck with him and that is also a good guide.
BEST CASE was an impressive winner at 1800m two starts back and then was a bit flat at 2200m last time. Back to 2000m here looks a genuine hope and will just need a truly run race.
MY DIAMANTINE turned in a very good run at 3200m in the Queensland Cup and has had a freshen since. Might be a chance here at the weights in what is not a strong open staying race.
COLLATERAL plugged away in a 2200m race start. He was going straight from 1600m to 2200m and he is better suited at the 2000m here.
MR ONE ELEVEN could be the surprise. His Sydney form was good for a race like this and he did trial well before his last start failure. Deserves respect at odds here.
SELECTIONS: NO4 PANNO ROSSA, NO2 BEST CASE, NO6 MY DIAMANTINE, NO11 COLLATERAL VALUE RUNNER: NO5 MR ONE ELEVEN.
R6 3.22pm Coke Zero Class 3 Plate 1350m
O'REILLY CYRUS (BEST BET) has won only one race but she does look extremely well placed here. She has had no luck in much harder races at her past two starts and hit the line well both times. She did start favourite in a Karaka Million, New Zealand's top two-year-old race, and with a fly weight looks thrown in at the Plate conditions. She can also handle wet and dry tracks. The only surprise is the generous odds being offered early.
DANDY ONE has always shown plenty of potential and was a runaway winner at Caloundra last Sunday. Normally would look a good bet but the big worry is giving O'Reilly Cyrus so much weight.
MONSIEUR GUSTAVE was a runaway winner at his only start for a new stable. Has barrier one and Jeff Lloyd here so will get the run of the race up on the pace. A word of warning in that he can put in the occasional shocker.
HAPPY SNITZEL has good enough form in Sydney to test this field despite the big weight.
HEROISM (Best Roughie) didn't have a lot of luck last start and should be much better suited at Doomben than his last outing. He looks good value.
R7 4.02pm Sprite Fillies & Mares Class 6 Plate 1200m
PIENKNA was very good first-up when second behind a very smart horse. She has always been rated as a future star galloper and should nearly win this from the inside barrier.
QUEEN TARA is up in class here but she has been very honest. In a very tough race she looks to be one of the runners who are on the up.
PEPPERANO showed some of her old good two-year-old form when led to the last few bounds first-up. She showed a real turn of pace to set up a big lead at one stage. Fitter now and down in the weights, she looks a definite hope here.
OUR LADY MAC has her share of ability and got home well last start without ever looking a place chance. She should be fitter and not without claims. She does usually get better as her campaign progresses.
KHALEESI was scratched last week from a harder race. But she does go well fresh and this is the type of race to suit her. Looks a value chance with a light weight after the 3kgs claim.
SELECTIONS: NO14 PIENKNA, NO15 QUEEN TARA, NO13 PEPPERANO, NO10 OUR LADY MAC. VALUE RUNNER: NO9 KHALEESI.
MY COUSIN BOSSY was very good on a tricky track at Eagle Farm. He led but doesn't have to do that here. He looks a real prospect and the handicapper hasn't got him yet.
HARDLINE was yet another horse to get caught in the inferior ground at Eagle Farm last start. It was a clear indication he is back near his best and that means he will be hard here.
OINK is thrown in at the weights and is being set for a Group One race in Sydney. But has a terrible barrier and will need some real luck here. If he gets it, watch out for him late and he will be good odds.
HI I'M BACK has been racing very consistently and is always a hope in these type of races.
But LAND OFFICE was very impressive winning in an easier race at the Sunshine Coast. He is well drawn here and suited under the Plate conditions. He has a few plus ticks where a few others have crosses. The stable rarely runs its horse in the city unless they have a real chance.
REVALDOR has been very good on wet tracks but also goes well in the dry. He has a terrible barrier but a light weight. He needs to get a start as first emergency but he will get one.
SELECTIONS: NO9 MY COUSIN BOSSY, NO11 LAND OFFICE, NO16 OINK, NO4 HARDLINE. VALUE RUNNER: NO16 OINK.