Racing returns on Saturday to Flemington for the running of the Group 1 Makybe Diva Stakes. There is a strong support card of feature races on the nine-race card.
The track is rated a Good 3 with the penetrometer at 4.78. The rail is at the true position and the weather will be overcast.
BEST BET: R7 No3 Black Heart Bart NEXT BEST BET: R6 No1 Under The Louvre BEST ROUGHIE: R8 No10 My Sister Lil
R1 12.25pm Sofitel Girls’ Day Out Handicap 2500m
BLACK TOMAHAWK is out to avenge his last-start defeat by Refectory and with top jockey Craig Williams booked, now gets his chance down a kilo on his last start ¾ lengths second over 2500m at Moonee Valley to 54kg when he started a $2.20 favourite. Will be right in the mix.
REFECTORY is searching for a hat-trick and is re-matched against Black Tomahawk here where he will carry 54kg again with Craig Newitt retaining the ride. The seven-year-old is tough and fought hard to win over 2500m at Moonee Valley on August 20. Good chance.
TRY FOUR has been racing in superb fashion notching four straight wins. Latest carried 59kg and won over 2400m on a Heavy track at Morphettville on August 20. Big drop to 54kg and has top apprentice Michael Dee as the pilot.
O’LONERA faces tough opposition but his form has been top class with four straight wins. Latest win over 2000m at Caulfield on August 13. Dwayne Dunn replaces Nicholas Hall and he drops 2g to 54kg. In the firing line.
ARIAZ gets her chance to fight back for a win after a strong effort first-up when charging home to run second over 1000m at Sandown on August 24. Ryan Maloney keeps the ride and she faces a stiff test in a deep race but there is plenty of upside.
GETEMHEL was super impressive romping in her maiden over 1100m by 3 ¼ lengths at Geelong on August 17. Patrick Maloney replaces Michael Walker and she has heaps of upside having only her third start today.
MY COUNTRY bowed out on a high with a comfortable win over 1200m at Eagle Farm on June 11. Dwayne Dunn rides the filly at her Flemington start, after Sydney jockey Blake Shinn rode her to her last win. Trialled well at Rosehill and is ready.
MISSROCK capped her last campaign to win the Group 2 Percy Sykes Stakes (1200m) at $11 at Randwick on April 9. The Victorian trained filly has Dwayne Dunn booked on her at her return on a red hot field of fillies.
SELECTIONS: No12 ARIAZ, No15 Getemhel, No4 My Country, No1 Missrock
VALUE RUNNER: No6 So Serene
R3 1.35pm Starlight Express Room Stakes 1400m
YU LONG SHENG HUI has looked super impressive at winning his two starts. He gets a big acid test here but is improved for having made a debut campaign, which he capped with a smart win over 1200m at Caulfield on July 2.
DETECTIVE was a thrilling second in the Group 2 Victorian Sires Stakes as a two-year-old as a maiden. Broke his maiden status with a good win over 1350m at Wyong on August 28. Chris Parnham gets the ride.
ZUNBAQA is an impressive More Than Ready filly, who has won four of her five starts. Latest she scored over 1400m here defying a betting drift from $3.80 to $4.20, but she meets a very strong field here.
TESSERA won the Group 3 Cannonbury Stakes last January. Struck a bog track first up when running seventh over 1200m at Rosehill on August 27. Top Melbourne jockey Craig Williams rides the Godolphin-trained colt.
SELECTIONS: No7 YU LONG SHENG HUI, No6 Detective, No12 Zunbaqa, No3 Tessera
VALUE RUNNER: No5 Throssell
R4 2.15pm The Sofitel 1400m
ULMANN faces tough opposition but he won over 1400m before heading to Adelaide where he struck a Heavy 9 track as a heavily backed $2.40 favourite and ran fifth over 1400m on August 20. Top jockey Damien Oliver is the new rider.
TASHBEEH drops in class here on his last start where he fought hard over the final 200m to run fourth to Black Heart Bart in the Group1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 27. Mark Zahra is the new rider.
PRINCE OF BROOKLYN struck a very classy type in He’s Our Rokki when finishing second over 1400m at Caulfield on August 27. He is a most consistent sprinter with a win and four seconds from his past five starts.
BON AURUM was anchored by a big weight on 60kg but fought hard to the wire when a close third over 1200m first up at Caulfield on August 27. He drops to 54kg and has premier jockey Craig Williams as the pilot.
SELECTIONS: No5 ULMANN, No3 Tashbeeh, No9 Prince Of Brooklyn, No11 Bon Aurum
VALUE RUNNER: No11 Bon Aurum
R5 2.50pm| Danehill Stakes 1200m
DEFCON made a brilliant return to the racetrack posting a convincing win in the Group 3 McNeil Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on August 27. Top jockey Dwayne Dunn keeps the ride on the three-year-old whose record stands at five starts for two wins and two seconds.
HIGHLAND BEAT had no answer to Defcon in the Group 3 McNeil Stakes (1200m) second up at Caulfield on August 27. Ran a blazing second first-up and with Mark Zahra as the new rider can breakthrough here.
SARACINO is a New Zealand-trained three-year-old making his Australian debut. He capped his home campaign with a good win in the Group 2 Foxbridge Plate (1200m) 28 days ago and has top Melbourne rider Damien Oliver on top.
ARCHIVES is a Godolphin-trained three-year-old making his Melbourne debut. Capped his debut campaign with a great win in the Hampdon Stakes (1200m) at Doomben on May 25. Top rider Craig Williams will steer.
UNDER THE LOUVRE (NEXT BEST BET) was barnstorming home but too late to catch Redzel in the Group 3 The Heath (1100m) at Caulfield first up on August 27. Dwayne Dunn replaces Nicholas Hall and is fitter now and hard to beat.
XTRAVAGANT is a Group 1 winner in New Zealand returning to Australia here. Capped his campaign at home with a brilliant win in the Group 3 Breeders’ Plate (1200m) and will have the services of ace jockey Damien Oliver.
KINGLIKE won the Group 2 Danehill Stakes here one year ago today. Was not asked for an effort when ran seventh over 900m in a trial at Rosehill on August 15. Jockey Chris Parnham has picked up a good ride here.
SANTA ANA LANE gave a good sight first-up to run third to Redzel in The Heath (1100m) at Caulfield on August 27. Dwayne Dunn has jumped up to ride The Louvre, with Daniel Moor the new rider.
SELECTIONS: No1 UNDER THE LOUVRE, No2 Xtravagant, No6 Kinglike, No8 Santa Ana Lane
VALUE RUNNER: No9 Tivaci
BLACK HEART BART (BEST BET) smashed his rivals first-up to win the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 27. That was his third Group 1 win in four starts. Again will be at red hot odds and under the weight-for-age conditions is hard to beat.
RISING ROMANCE chased home hard but found the winner Black Heart Bart too strong in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 27. She won’t be at $17 here and gets her chance to extract revenge with Damian Lane keeping the ride.
PALENTINO was caught wide and worked home well to claim fifth place to Black Heart Bart in the Group 1 Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield on August 27. Won the Australian Guineas (1600m) last summer and is better suited over this trip.
ALPINE EAGLE was first-up and worked to the line well when running sixth to Black Heart Bart in the Memsie Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield first up on August 27. Was runner-up in the group 1 Australian Guineas (1600m) last summer and will be fitter.
SELECTIONS: No3 BLACK HEART BART, No12 Rising Romance, No10 Palentino, No8 Alpine Eagle
VALUE RUNNER: No9 Tarzino
R8 4.50pm Let’s Elope Stakes 1400m
DON’T DOUBT MAMMA was a huge run first-up when had no luck in running but stormed home to land fifth place to Ocean Embers in the Group 3 Cockram Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on August 27. Dwayne Dunn is the new rider.
TELOPEA is most consistent and expect a bold showing again on her last start third to ocean Embers in the Group 3 Cockram Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on August 27. Damien Oliver offsets her horror draw in gate (19).
BADAWIYA won the Group 2 Kewney Stakes 1400m here first-up last campaign. She faces her own sex here fresh after having a soft trial over 1000m at Pakenham on August 25. Craig Newitt is booked again.
CATCH A FIRE is a Group 2 winner who was too strong for her female rivals over 1200m at Moonee Valley on August 20. She has a great draw in (3) from where she should be forward and is an each-way tip.
SELECTIONS: No2 DON’T DOUBT MAMMA, N012 Telopea, No1 Badawiya, No3 Catch A Fire
VALUE RUNNER: No10 My Sister Lil (BEST ROUGHIE)
R9 5.25pm Spring Is The Season Handicap 1700m
PILOTE D’ESSAI is a Northern Hemisphere import, who can turn the tables on Royal Raputre, after going down in a good fight over 1500m at Moonee Valley on August 20. Dwayne Dunn will again ride and will be fitter.
ROYAL RAPTURE got the better of Pilote D’Essai to cause something of a boil-over beating the $1.90 favourite by three lengths at Moonee Valley on August 20. Back to Flemington on the wider and longer track he may find it harder.
HOWARD BE THY NAME is a young stayer on the rise. He won the Group 1 SA Derby (2400m) and ran fourth as a $3.50 favourite in the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2400m). Has had no trials but out of the top stable of Darren Weir.
BIG MEMORY is a tough stayer who will be fresh after having his last start here on April 25. He has had two sharp trials over 1200m in South Australia in preparation for him crossing the border.
SELECTIONS: No13 PILOTE D’ESSAI, No3 Royal Rapture, No5 Howard Be Thy Name, No4 Big Memory
VALUE RUNNER: No5 Howard Be Thy Name.