Moonee Valley hosts the holiday Money meeting. It is a nice eight-race card with Darren Weir’s Irish import Handsome Thief appearing the best bet of the meeting. Weir has had great success with the Northern Hemisphere imports. The track is rated as a Good 4 with the false rail at seven metres. The weather should be overcast, but fine with a top of 26C.
QUADDIES (Races 5-6-7-8)
Skinny Play: 1,4,7,8 / 4 / 1,3,5,9 / 1,5,6,7
Wide Play: 1,4,5,7,8,9,10 / 4,6,11 / 1,3,5,8,9,10,13 / 1,2,4,5,6,7,9,10
BEST BEST: R6 – 4 HANDSOME THIEF
NEXT BEST BET: R5– 1 ASHDOR
BEST ROUGHIE: R4– 7. STAR PATRIOT
No4 ABERRATION If he shows natural improvement on his first two starts then he should be right in the frame. Was untouched at his trial when finishing fourth over 800m at Cranbourne on February 7. Dwayne Dunn rides this Godolphin galloper.
No5 FAST STRYKE Has finished inside the money at all of his five starts. Proved wayward but ran a top race to finish second over 1200m in a maiden at Sandown on March 1 first-up. Fitter.
No10 OUR CHIQUILLA She has been placed at her three starts and with Mitchell Aitken’s 3kg claim will carry only 53kg. Good effort to run third over 1200m in a maiden at Swan Hill on March 3.
No8 TENAPPY LADIES Was heavily backed at her debut two starts ago. She warmed up for this with a quiet trial over 800m at Cranbourne on February 8 and with Beau Mertens’ 2kg claim carries 56kg.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 OUR CHIQUILLA
No9 TRUE EXCELSIOR This is a tough race with so many debutantes. Showed speed at her jump out at Flemington last month and is a $450,000 New Zealand yearling graduate. Lovely bred filly and respect from gate 2.
No7 RUNWAY QUEEN Is bound to be improved on her debut third over 1100m in a maiden at Seymour on February 21. She gets Luke Currie replacing Damian Lane but has a wide gate in 8. Keep safe.
No3 LUQUAA Hails from the state’s leading juvenile yard and can improve on her debut ninth over 1000m here on October 22. She gets top jockey Damien Oliver to steer and watch.
No5 PURELY ROYAL Aimed too high in a Group 3 at her debut last year down the straight at Flemington. Back down in grade here but her alley in 14 is of concern. She sports ear muffs and winkers for the first time and trialed well.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 PURELY ROYAL
No5 TESSABELLE Won at Sandown two starts ago and was upgraded into Group 3 class when finishing eighth in the Lord Reims Stakes (2600m) at Morphettville on March 4. Damien Oliver is a big plus.
No7 CASSADEE Is a three-year-old filly who steps up to a distance for the first time. Good effort to win over 1600m at Sandown on March 1 and with Beau Mertens’ 2kg claim will carry 55kg. Top showing.
No6 TYPHOON MONACO Has been in sparkling form and was a good third over 1600m at Pakenham on March 1. She jumps 4kg to 58.5kg here but she has Dwayne Dunn to steer.
No1 UNFURL Returns off a 42-day break but is from the stables of Darren Weir. She won over 2000m against her own sex at Caulfield on January 26. Ethan Brown’s 3kg claim drops her weight to 58kg.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 UNFURL
No2 BEWILDERING Gets blinkers on for the first time. She is back against her own age here after running second over 1400m at Seymour on February 21. Beau Merten’s 2kg claim sees her carry 57kg.
No9 BELLE DU SUD Is a Sydney filly who won at Kembla Grange before finishing second over 1800m at Rosehill on February 22. She gets Melbourne rider Stephen Baster to steer and has blinkers back on.
No5 MONTOYA’S SECRET Was a well-backed favourite before posting an emphatic 3len win over 1400m against her own sex at Pakenham on March 3. She goes up 1.5kg to 59kg for her win but is back against her own age and sex.
No7 STAR PATRIOT (Best Roughie) Chasing a hat-trick here after posting a fighting win over 1450m against her own sex at Keynton on February 20. She gets senior rider Jamie Mott to navigate here but up 2.5kg to 59kg.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 STAR PATRIOT
No1 ASHLOR (Next Best Bet) Gets in okay with the 3kg claim of apprentice Mitchell Aitken on 60.5kg. He should be ready to keep his unblemished first-up record intact having had two gate trials. The latest he won over 900m at Wangaratta on March 6. He has won at three of his four starts and races against his own age here and is unbeaten over the 1200m.
No7 MANDEE She was sharp as a razor at a recent Caulfield jump-out. Top showing.
No9 SUMMER WIND She won her maiden two starts ago and is fresh here off a 46-day break.
No4 MR TINDALL Has top Sydney hoop Hugh Bowman to steer and won well at debut.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 SUMMER WIND
No4 HANDSOME THIEF (Best Bet) Is an Irish-bred galloper who won at his Australian debut here by 3 ¾ lengths before going down as a $1.60 hot-shot over 1200m at Sandown on February 22. He carries the same weight on 60kg and stable jockey Brad Rawiller rides for Darren Weir. Top chance.
No11 MY AIM IS TRUE Fought hard last start narrowly going down and won here two starts ago.
No6 IMPERIAL EMPRESS Won at Sale two starts ago and pay to give her another chance on her last run.
No7 LAUCHETTI May need some luck from the gate 10 but has winning form.
VALUE RUNNER: No11 MY AIM IS HIGH
No1 DOOM ‘N’ BOOM Was most unlucky and can rebound here after finishing fifth for Steve Arnold after being stuck on the fence over 2500m here on February 25. Ben Thompson’s 2kg alleviates his impost to 60kg.
No9 BRING A ROSE Fought on well enough to run third over 2500m here on February 25. She won at her prior start at Ballarat and with Linda Meech again to ride gets her chance on 55.5kg.
No3 OUR COVENANT Was the object of a good betting move from $14 into $7.50 before finishing fourth over 2100m at Sandown on February 22. Again has 59kg and did win at prior start at Bendigo.
No5 IT’S A SILVERTRAIL Was charging home like the Light Brigade when finishing second over 2100m at Sandown on February 22. Beau Mertens’ 2kg claim sees him carry 55kg and he hails from the noted yard of Darren Weir.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 DOOM ‘N’ BOOM
No6 RAPTOR Keeps getting better and can reverse the placings on Bel Burgess here after running second to him over 1400m at Ballarat on February 26. He gets Dwayne Dunn replacing and apprentice here.
No5 DEVILISHLY Can strip fitter here on fifth over 1500m at Sandown on February 22. With apprentice Beau Mertens’ 2kg claim she carries 57kg and is drawn to get a cosy run from gate 3.
No7 ROCK’N’ROLLROCK Struck some smart types when finishing second over 1600m at Sandown on March 1. Jamie Mott replaces Dwayne Dunn who rides Raptor here. Makes some appeal.
No1 BEL BURGESS Posted a narrow win at his last start over 1400m at Ballarat on February 26. With apprentice Jordan Childs’ 1.5kg claim he drops to 60kg, which is a half kilo more than he carried last start.
VALUE RUNNER: No6 RAPTOR