Melbourne has received a deluge this week with hail and heavy rains causing much flooding about the city and the State of Victoria.
The track is going to be rain-soaked with showers forecast for Saturday as well.
The rail is out to 12 metres, which could make it tricky.
This is not an easy card of nine races and suggest to watch for any strong betting moves.
QUADDIES (races 6,7,8,9)
Skinny Play: 4,8,10 / 6 / 1,2 / 6,9,11
Wide Play: 2,3,4,8,9,10 / 2,6,10,11 / 1,2,4,10 / 6,7,8,9,11
BEST BET: R7 – 6. MISS VISTA
Next Best Bet: R8 – 1. CHARMED HARMONY
Best Roughie: R2 – 14. MIGHTIEST
No3 NETHERFIELD was suited when stepping up to 1600m and finishing a good second at Sandown on April 11. He drops 1.5kg to 55.5kg in this race against his own age and with barrier 11 has the speed to cross. With the track rain-sodden he is bred to handle it.
No1 SOJU WARRIOR has won at two of his past four starts. Latest was fresh and will strip fitter for his fifth over 1600m in 3yr class at Sandown on April 17. With Ben Thompson’s 1.5kg claim he carriers 56.5kg and has a good draw in five. The question is whether he handles the heavy going.
No10 HE EKSCELS is a lightly raced 3yo who gave a solid enough effort to run a close third as a $2.40 favourite over 1717m at Sale on April 18. He was swamped that day but did give his all and with the blinkers going on here will help his concentration. Has strong rider Dwayne Dunn on top.
No4 JUDELLY scored a slashing ten-length win to break his maiden status over 1600m at Sony Creek. He was backed into a $1.95 favourite that day and he faced a bog track. He faces another bog track here and gets a change of rider with senior jockey Luke Nolen the new pillion. Hard to ignore.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 HE EKCSCELS
No3 ZAHSPEED has the speed to cart along this field and on the wet could be the one to catch. Latest ran a sound third after leading over 1800m here on April 8. Gets a change of rider with the experienced Ben Allen taking the reins. His 1.5kg allowance drops his weight to 56.5kg. Makes good appeal.
No14 MIGHTIEST (BEST ROUGHIE) is racing first-up but did have a great campaign last time. He was given a trial over 2400m at Cranbourne on April 6. Trainer Ciaron Maher has booked Mitchell Aitken and his 3kg claim will see him carry a mere 51kg here. He has a fair first-up record and will race home well.
No11 ODEON posted two smart country wins in Victoria before running a strong second in the Port Adelaide Guineas (1800m) at Morphettville on April 8. Back home here and gets Katelyn Mallyon to ride at his first start back. Should be midfield and run home well.
No4 HURSLEY has the effervescent Craig Williams to ride and drops 3.5kg to 57.5kg here. He carried 61kg to run a strong second over 2000m at Flemington at his last start on March 18. He was the $3 favourite on that occasion. He has drawn two and trainer Chris Waller is firing here.
No11 MR SNEAKY has finished in the money at eight of his ten starts. Latest chased down Theanswermyfriend in a great win over1400m at Flemington on March 4. Will lack nothing in horsemanship with Dwayne Dunn replacing Craig Williams and would respect here.
No8 LAUCHETTI has won at three of his past four starts in easier grades. Latest he posted a comfortable ¾ length win over 1200m at Sandown on April 17. With apprentice Jordan Childs’ 1.5kg allowance he will carry 56kg here and he hails from an astute stable.
No3 CHASE THE HORIZON has a great record racing fresh. Gave a good effort to run third over 1100m at Caulfield on April 15 first-up. Gets a change of rider with Ben Allen replacing Beau Mertens. Allen’s 1.5kg claim will see him carry 58kg here. Loves this track and distance.
No6 DANE THUNDER is bound to be improved on his first-up second to Lauchetti over 1200m at Sandown on April 17. He gets the bonus of Craig Williams to ride here and he drops a kilo to 58kg. He was backed last time from $12 into $8.50. He rates as one of the better chances here.
VALUE RUNNER: No8 LAUCHETTI
No4 SNITTY KITTY has had a gear change with pacifiers going on at her rematch against Merriest. She fought tooth and nail to go down in the shadows last time over 1100m here on April 15. She races against her own sex and age again and should be fitter with a fortnight gap between runs.
No1 MERRIEST has thrived in this class but she is not known on the rain-affected tracks. She clawed to a narrow win over Snitty Kitty over 1100m last time on April 15. Ben Thompson replaces Daniel Moor and his 1.5kg allowance reduces her impost to 57.5kg. With the claim she looks okay at the weights.
No9 FAWAAREQ has been entered for softer races over the weekend so if she runs would respect. She was super impressive at winning her maiden at her debut over 1200m at Cranbourne on April 7. This is a big jump in class but she has plenty of upside and hails from the hot stable of Team Hayes.
No13 CLUB TROPICANA broke her maiden status in style with a clever win over 1000m against her own age and sex at Cranbourne on April 7. Gets the hot jockey Katelyn Mallyon to ride here and she is down 3kg to 54kg for her rise in class. She should swim in the going but the class is the query.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 FAWAAREQ
No1 DOUBT I’M DREAMING has looked impressive at a win in a race and trial. He romped home by 2¾ lengths at his sole race start over 1200m at Moonee Valley on March 24. He was then taken to Cranbourne where he again posted an easy win over 800m on a Heavy track on April 21. Jamie Mott keeps the ride on this handsome colt, who from gate five should get a soft run and be hard to beat.
No4 SEIZED is on the back up after running a good second over 1200m here last Saturday. Trainer John Sadler has made a riding change booking Ben Allen on his colt. He was fancied backed from $9.50 into $7 last week and would expect another forward showing from gate three.
No9 BASANITE is a son of leading stallion Fastnet Rock. His owners paid $225,000 for this colt at the Gold Coast Magic Millions sale and he has looked good at his two trials. Latest ran second over 800m on a Heavy 8 at Cranbourne on April 21. Faces a rain-soaked track here and respect.
No3 KOBAYASHI pulled away from his rivals to win by 2¼ lengths at his last start here on April 8. Apprentice Ben Thompson is booked to ride here but is unable to use his claim and he will carry his listed weight on 57kg. Has been in the money at his past two starts and has upside having race three times.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 BASANITE
No8 WISE HERO arguably could be unbeaten. There were rumours of a Hong Kong sale, but that must have fallen through. Has been at short odds at his past two starts and won two of his three starts. He did trial well winning over 990m on a Heavy 8 at Cranbourne on April 21 and has Dwayne Dunn riding.
No4 LEOTIE pay to forget her first-up run when she ran a shocker finishing last of nine over 1100m at Flemington against her own age and sex on March 18. Has been given a few good hit-outs since then and would expect her to show sharp improvement. She is too good to dismiss on one poor effort.
No10 BORD DE GAIN has been imposing at his two provincial wins. Latest careered away to an easy win over 1000m at Bendigo on April 1. With apprentice Ben Thompson’s 1.5kg claim will drop his weight to 54kg. The barrier is not good in 15 but he has an unblemished record and rates with claims.
No2 EXTRA OLIVES has been freshened since her fourth in the Canberra Guineas (1400m) on March 5. Trainers Lee and Anthony Freedman have booked Mitchell Aitken and his 3kg claim reduces her weight to a mere 54.5kg. She had won twice and been placed second twice at her prior four starts.
VALUE RUNNER: No2 EXTRA OLIVES
No6 MISS VISTA (BEST BET) is something of a cult horse with her big white blaze and four white sox. She blazed them first up over 1100m here on April 15. She keeps Linda Meech on board and has the same weight on 55.5kg against her own sex. The sole difference from a stats view is she has not drawn so hot jumping from gate 12. She is a winner of four of her five starts and has never been outside of the money.
No8 CHIAVARI loves the wet tracks and has been most honest to her backers.
No11 MAJESTIC LASS with the claim she carries a mere 51kg and has been working very well.
No2 ESTAMINET has a first-up record of six starts to finish in the money five times. Strong.
VALUE RUNNER: No2 ESTAMINET
No1 CHARMED HARMONY (NEXT BEST BET) has proven a most reliable sprinter and drops in grade from the high class races he has been competing in. Latest he ran a strong second over 1400m in a Group 3 here on April 15. Top jockey Katelyn Mallyon rides the seven-year-old who jumps from gate seven and loves the wet tracks. Looks very well suited here.
No2 STAR EXHIBIT is the reigning Perth Cup winner resuming for new trainer Darren Weir.
No4 ZEBULON has a heap of ability but plenty of issues to contend with. Softer track should help.
No5 HEART STARTER excellent miler debuting for his new trainer Darren Weir. Worth watching.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 HEART STARTER
No11 FASTNET LATINA is unbeaten in Australia at four starts. Latest carried 56.5kg to win over 1600m at Morphettville on April 8. With apprentice Jordan Childs riding again he gets a good weight dropping to 52.5kg with Child’s allowance. Being a European the wet track should no be a hindrance.
No7 SHOW A STAR gets apprentice Ben Allen as his new rider and with his 1.5kg claim will carry 56.5kg. He ran on fairly last start over 1600m in the Golden Mile at Bendigo on April 1. He was well fancied that day and has been freshened for this. Has claims.
No9 CURRAGH appears to be at the top of his game. He gave a fighting effort to run second over 1600m here on April 15. Strong rider Dwayne Dunn keeps the mount and he will again be a force going up only a kilo to 55kg and against similar horses over the same distance.
No8 LOVING HOME is from the leading stables of Chris Waller. Waller is firing in Melbourne at the minute and this bloke has been given two solid trials over 990m and 1175m at Cranbourne in preparation for his return here. Craig Newitt is riding well for the Waller camp and rides here.
VALUE RUNNER: No8 LOVING HOME