The spring racing carnival hits one of its high points here with the running of the $3 million Caulfield Cup.
There is a bumper ten-race card to whet the appetite of punters with full fields and quality gallopers.
The Caulfield Cup is the biggest lead-up into next month’s $6m Melbourne Cup, where the best of the internationals will clash with the best Australia and New Zealand has to offer. The weather is forecast to be fine with the track rated at a Good 3 and the rail is at the true position.
QUADDIES Races: 7-8-9-10
SKINNY PLAY: 1,2,4,6 / 3,4,5,11,12,17 / 2,3,4,5 / 4,6,9,10,12,16
WIDE PLAY: 1,2,3,4,6,9,11,12 / 3,4,5,6,8,10,11,12,1,3,14,17 / 1,2,3,4,5,7 / 4,9,10,11,12,16
BEST BET: R9 No5 Hellbent
NEXT BEST BET: R6 No1 It’s Somewhat
BEST ROUGHIE: R10 No9 Durendal
SYLPHEED was steady in the betting at $4.20 before posting a brilliant 2¼ length win at her debut here on October 1. She drops 2kg to 55 for the effort and is again against her own sex and age and looks hard to beat.
JENNIFER LYNN hails from the leading stables of Darren Weir and has launched a good start to her career on provincial tracks. Latest won her second start over 1400m on a heavy track at Coleraine on September 25. She is ready.
SWAMPLAND looms with plenty of upside with a win at Mornington over 1200m in a maiden at her last start on September 28. That was only her second start so there is room for heaps of further improvement.
PETITION is another lightly raced filly with room to improve. She chased hard but was unable to bridge the gap last start when running a close third in a 1400m maiden at Pakenham on September 30. Has each-way claims.
SELECTIONS: No5 SYLPHEED, No8 Jennifer Lynn, No10 Swampland, No14 Petition.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 Swampland.
R2 12.50pm POLYTRACK GOTHIC STAKES 1400m
INSIDE AGENT looks to have abundant natural ability. He was a big winner at Flemington when racing greenly over 1400m on October 2. Michael Walker remains on top and with the experience he should be more tractable and can repeat the dose.
TRENCHANT was heavily backed from $8 into $5.50 at his last start but had little luck when finishing ninth to Inside Agent over 1400m at Flemington on October 2. Craig Williams keeps the ride and he gets his chance here from gate four.
MORTON’S FORK looms as a big chance at his Melbourne debut on his last-start win at Rosehill. He romped away to a 1 ¾ length victory over 1300m at the odds of a $3.10 favourite and with Brenton Avdulla as the new rider is looking to repeat.
ACATOUR has won three of his four starts and blasted his rivals by three lengths over 1500m at Rosehill on September 28. He comes to Melbourne with a big wrap but will need to be on his mettle in a tough race.
SELECTIONS: NO3 INSIDE AGENT, No2 Trenchant, No4 Morton’s Fork, No7 Acatour.
VALUE RUNNER: No2 Trenchant.
R3 1.25pm CROWN LAGER ALINGHI STAKES 1100m
SUPER CASH is a four-year-old mare who made a brilliant return from a spell with a one-length win over 1100m against her own sex as a $3.10 favourite on September 24. Craig Williams keeps the ride and she makes strong appeal.
FLIPPANT is a four-year-old Sydney mare who has Sydney’s best jockey Hugh Bowman to steer. She has had two solid trials at Randwick in preparation for this. Has a good fresh record and overall record of four wins and a second at nine starts.
CHLOE IN PARIS is going to relish her big drop in class here. She plummets on her first-up run where she ran ninth to Extreme Choice in the Group 1 Moir Stakes (1000m) at Moonee Valley on September 30. Worth watching.
MISS PROMISCUITY is a talented mare who has been freshened for this. Last start she was at $3.80 in the Group 3 How Now here on September 17. Dwayne Dunn sticks to her and the stable is running hot.
SELECTIONS: No7 SUPER CASH, No4 Flippant, No8 Chloe In Paris, No1 Miss Promiscuity.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 Miss Promiscuity.
R4 2pm NEW ZEALAND BLOODSTOCK ETHEREAL STAKES 2000m
SEBRING DREAM is on the quick back-up. She has the blinkers removed after her luckless sixth to Legless Veuve in last Saturday’s Group 1 Thousand Guineas (1600m) here. She should appreciate the rise in distance.
MOQUEEN is a Sydney filly who earned her ticket to Melbourne with a smart 1 ¼ length win over 1600mn at Rosehill on October 1. Top Sydney jockey Blake Shinn rides her here and she should welcome the extra 400m.
BELLA SORELLASTRA is a filly who may be on the rise. She ran a cracking second to Serenely Discreet in the Group 2 Edward Manifold at Flemington at her last start on October 2. She won before that at Sale and she makes appeal.
ELEONORA is a talented New Zealand filly who was knocked from pillar to post in the Group 2 Edward Manifold at Flemington at her last start when finishing 11th on October 2. She won impressively at her Australian debut the start before.
SELECTIONS: No2 SEBRING DREAM, No1 Moqueen, No3 Bella Sorellastra, No5 Eleonora.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 Eleonora.
R5 2.35pm LADBROKES CLASSIC 2000m
SEABURGE was a huge run last Saturday when sweeping home to narrowly miss catching Divine Prophet in the Group 1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m). Kerrin McEvoy rides here replacing Mark Zahra and if he repeats will be hard to beat.
WINE BUSH keeps on improving with each start. Sydney’s premier jockey Hugh Bowman has stuck here after his last-start win over 1800m at Flemington on October 2. That day he beat the talented Rocketeer and he rates highly.
INFERENCE will be better suited here on a bigger track than he was at Moonee Valley last start, when finishing fourth to Hey Doc in the Group 2 Bill Stutt Stakes (1600m) on September 30. He eased from $3.80 to $5.50 that night.
HIGHLAD is bound to have benefitted from his first Australian start when running third to Wine Bush over 1800m at Flemington on October 2. He eased from $5.50 to $7 that day. Damien Oliver keeps the ride but he has again drawn wide in (15).
SELECTIONS: No1 SEABURGE, No4 Wine Bush, No6 Inference, No7 Highlad.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 Highlad.
R6 3.10pm PRICELINE PHARMACY COONGY CUP 2000m
IT’S SOMEWHAT (NEXT BEST BET) must carry the equal top weight on 59kg but he is racing in sensational form. He scored a brilliant win in the Group 3 Craven Stakes (2000m) at Randwick at his last start on October 1 for stable jockey James McDonald. Sydney’s premier hoop Hugh Bowman rides here so he will lack nothing in horsemanship. He was at the vice-like odds of $1.56 last start but should be at more liberal odds of $2.40 here.
SELECTIONS: No1 IT’S SOMEWHAT, No3 Maurus, No8 Tarquin, No9 Blizzard.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 Blizzard.
R7 3.45pm SCHWEPPES TRISTARC STAKES 1400m
TYCOON TARA is high flying and won the Golden Pendant with two lengths up her sleeve at her last start at Rosehill on September 24. That was at her second start this campaign and Kerrin McEvoy takes the reins here from Josh Parr. She should be hard to beat.
FIRST SEAL is a former star filly who can bounce back. She ran out of steam when finishing fifth to Tycoon Tara first-up in the Golden Pendant (1400m) on September 24. With top Sydney jockey Blake Shinn on board again she gets her chance to extract revenge.
DANISH TWIST ran a huge race first-up to run a close third to Takedown in the weight-for-age Premiere Stakes (1400m) at Randwick on October 1. She is down in grade back to mares’ company here and with top Melbourne rider Damien Oliver to steer rates highly.
SHILLELAGH is a New Zealand mare who has won five of her eight starts. Hong Kong jockey Zac Purton rides her here after she posted a smart win over 1440m here on October 1. Expect a forward showing.
SELECTIONS: No2 TYCOON TARA, No1 First Seal, No6 Danish Twist, No12 Shillelagh.
VALUE RUNNER: No12 Shillelagh.
R8 4.30pm BMW CAULFIELD CUP 2400m
JAMEKA is racing the bets of the Australian brigade. She won the Naturalism Stakes and then chased hard behind the brilliant Hartnell in the Turnbull Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 2. She has the perfect preparation into this race.
SCOTTISH will wear the royal blue of Godolphin and his form overseas has been first class coming into this with a second and a win at the Group 3 level over 2086m and 1799m. Always hard to line up the form against Australian horses but the internationals do well in this race.
EXOSPHERIC is a British galloper in the hands of Australian trainers Lee and Anthony Freedman. He ran fifth in the Group 1 Juddmonte Stakes (2080m) last start and is reported to be thriving since landing in Victoria. Class galloper.
SIR ISAAC NEWTON hails from the yard of Aiden O’Brien. His form has been top class and would ignore his last start 12th in the Irish Championship and go on his prior fourth in the Group 1 Juddmonte Stakes (2080m). He is a class stayer.
SELECTIONS: No11 JAMEKA, No4 Scottish, No3 Exospheric, No5 Sir Isaac Newton.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 Sir Isaac Newton.
R9 5.10pm DILMAH FOR LOVERS OF TEA CAULFIELD SPRINT 1000m
HELLBENT (BEST BET) is one of the most improved gallopers in Melbourne. The four-year-old stallion blazed Sheidel here on September 24 and then Sheidel returned here at her next start and obliterated her opposition last Saturday. The sprinter has won six of his eleven starts and has shown vast improvement since joining the leading yard of Darren Weir. With Melbourne’s premier jockey Craig Williams to ride on 53kg he looms as hard to beat.
SELECTIONS: No5 HELLBENT, No4 Wild Rain, No2 Our Boy Malachi, No1 Lankan Rupee.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 Lankan Rupee.
R10 5.45pm LADBROKES MOONGA STAKES 1400m
VOODOO LAD missed landing his maiden Group 1 by centimetres when he just failed to catch Bon Arum in the Alister Clarke Stakes (1400m) here on September 24. He goes up 2.5kg to 56.5kg and has a change of rider with Brad Rawiller taking the reins.
FAST ‘N’ ROCKING ran a huge third to Bon Arum and Voodoo Lad in the Group 1 Alister Clarke Stakes (1400m) here on September 24. He is not as well drawn here in gate (12), but if he repeats the run he will be there.
TAKEDOWN is racing in full flight in Sydney. He posted a smart win in the Group 2 The Shorts before repeating the dose in the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on October 1. He makes strong appeal.
DURENDAL (BEST ROUGHIE) ran a great second to The Quarterback in a Group 2 over 1200m at Flemington on October 2. Damian Lane retains the ride and he will strip fitter for the effort.
SELECTIONS: No12 VOODOO LAD, No6 Fast “N” Rocking, No4 Takedown, No9 Durendal.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 Durendal.