This is a mammoth meeting with big fields and 10 races on the card.
The track is going to get cut up a lot with hooves pounding the grass which is rated as a Soft5 and could deteriorate with the weather being overcast and a chance of showers.
Racing has been difficult with consistent heavy tracks due to the rain over recent times and would suggest punters watch the races closely and see where the jockeys elect to run their horses.
The rail is at three metres but the inside could be off but you will only know from watching the early races. It is winter and it is cold!
QUADDIES (races 7,8,9,10)
Skinny Play: 2,6 – 1,7 – 1,4,11 – 5,6,10
Wide Play: 1,2,5,6,10 – 1,2,7,8 – 1,3,4,6,11 – 5,6,7,10,12
BEST BET: R6 – 4. BASTILLE
Next Best Bet: R9 – 4. KOOLAMA BAY
Best Roughie: R8 – 7. BLOOD MOON
No2 ELLE GAGNE drops sharply in class on her debut when she kept on working to the line to run a handy fifth down the straight 1100m at Flemington on May 6. Jake Noonan keeps the ride and back in maiden class she gets her chance.
No14 TRUE EXCELSIOR has been placed at her two city starts and sure to have plenty of admirers. Latest she ran a solid second over 1100m at Sandown on March 23. She gets top apprentice Ben Thompson to ride.
SCRATCHED No1 CINCINNATI RED is a beautifully-bred filly who will wear a tongue tie at her debut. She hails from the astute stables of Leon and Troy Cortsens and is a daughter of the Zabeel stallion Reset from the Redout’es Choice mare, Regarded.
SCRATCHED No12 STRAVIERA was placed second first-up before finishing a sound fifth over 1100m in a maiden at Echuca on July 27. Punters who took the 1.80 will be eager to get their money back here, where top rider Mark Zahra steers.
VALUE RUNNER: No12 STRAVIERA
No5 KRAGLE has the successful combination of champion trainer Darren Weir and jockey Damian Lane. The pair has kicked off strongly into the new season and this son of High Chaparral has shown enough on the training tracks to warrant at debut.
No11 DIXIE PREACHER is a nicely bred colt making his debut. He was not pushed at his sole trial when running sixth over 1040m here back in January. He gets top jockey Ben Melham to ride and watch market closely here.
No8 EXCEDER showed improvement at his latest start when working home to finish third over 1200m in a maiden at Sale on July 20. He gets top country jockey Nikita Beriman to ride and unlikely to be at silly odds again here.
No4 HUNTING TOWER is a son of leading staying stallion High Chaparral making his debut. He is a product of the leading stable of Mick Price and he has done enough on the training tracks to be worth a look here.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 HUNTING TOWER
No14 ONCE UPON A DREAM is a 3yr F who gave a good sight at her debut to run a strong second over 1000m here in a maiden on July 28. She gets Craig Newitt to ride again but has drawn wide in gate (13).
No4 MARQUANT is a lovely bred 4yr gelding from a top stable. The son of Fastnet Rock was first-up when finishing fifth over 1200m in a maiden here on July 28. Ace jockey Dwayne Dunn replaces Jamie Winks and would respect.
No7 LILY’S REWARD was first-up when running fifth against her own sex here on July 28. She covered more ground than Burke and Wills that day and will strip much fitter for the outing. Boris Thornton rides, but cannot use his allowance.
No10 EIRA showed enough in a trial to finish third over 800m at Cranbourne in March to keep an eye on here at debut. The 3yr colt gets top jockey Damian Lane to ride and hails from the in-form yard of Danny O’Brien.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 EIRA
No10 PRETTY MAMA has been placed at three of her four starts. Latest she ran a solid third over 1400m here on July 14. She gets comeback jockey Michael Walker to ride and from gate (8) should get a cosy run.
SCRATCHED No4 SISTINE SAINT has been knocking on the door and he gets his opportunity here. Latest he ran a good third in a 1600m maiden at Echuca on July 27. Has Mark Zahra to steer and will be strongly-fancied.
No16 RIP GIRL finished right on the heels of the winner last start when running fourth over 1300m at Sandown on July 27. She drops back down to maiden class here and would expect another strong finish from her.
SCRATCHED No2 HARADAFURY struck a bog track first up so had to do it hard when finishing fourth over 1400m at Warrnambool on August 1. Is on the quick back-up here but is ready having third run back from a spell.
VALUE RUNNER: No16 RIP GIRL
No3 VERSTAPPEN was given a soft hit-at in a jump out at Flemington on July 28. Gets top jockey Damien Oliver to ride here first up from a spell and hails from a successful stable. Has won and been placed second at two starts fresh.
No5 CRYSTAL FOUNTAIN cannot fault her form with an unblemished scoresheet. Chasing a fourth straight win here after scoring an easy win at Moonee Valley in December. Looms strong again here from gate (6).
No1 VELLASTAR resumes from an 87-day break here. Won two straight before finishing sixth over 1200m at Ballarat on May 14. Gets top jockey Ben Melham to ride and can bounce back.
No7 DU SUMPENT sustained a long campaign last preparation but was given a lengthy spell to recover. Resumes here and has a great record at this track with two starts for a win and a second. Respect.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 VELLASTAR
No4 BASTILLE (BEST BET) looks to have a heap of upside on his exposed form of two wins and a second at three starts. Was given a very soft hit out in a jump at Flemington mid last month and has had plenty of time to increase fitness. The stable’s Group 1-winning jockey Regan Bayliss is to ride and makes strong appeal fresh.
No5 DEMOLITION will be having his first start for new trainer James Cumnmings. Has ability.
No7 IT’S A SHAME BILLY expect him to be running home strongly and makes a good case here.
SCRATCHED No10 WORLD OF HOPE connections have been searching for the right race scratching her several times.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 IT’S A SHAME BILLY
No2 HARVARD has been as consistent as a Swiss watch and makes good appeal here on last start second over 2400m here on July 16. Has a great record on this track of a win and a second at his two starts.
No5 AROHATA is unbeaten at his two starts on the synthetic track here. Last start was raised in class when running ninth over 2000m at Caulfield on July 15. Back in grade and has performed well on the turf here too. Danger.
No6 BIT OF A LAD expect him to be working home late on his last start sixth over 2400m at Sandown on July 26. He hails from the top yard of Darren Weir and gets top Irish jockey John Allen to ride from gate (6).
No10 BAJA MOON chased hard when finishing a sound fifth over 2400m at Sandown on July 26. He carries the same weight on 56kg but gets top jockey ben Melham as his new pilot here. Has each-way claims.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 BAJA MOON
No1 I’M TELLING YA gets his best opportunity to break-through here. Latest ran a good third down the straight 1100m at Flemington on July 22. He has been most consistent and should get a soft run from gate (7).
No4 SMOOTH HUSTLER broke his maiden in style against 3yr over 1200m at Bairnsdale on July 25. That was only his second start and he was hotly fancied as a $2.70 favourite. Will be in the finish again.
No3 FLASH BOY is resuming from a 148-day break. He can finish on strongly and with senior jockey Daniel Moor to ride he should get some favours from his good draw in (8) on a rain-affected track.
SCRATCHED No7 BLOOD MOON (TOP ROUGHIE) struck a bog track and ploughed through the heavy going in style to win over 1200m in a maiden at Wodonga on July 22. This is a rise in class, but cannot knock.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 BLOOD MOON
SCRATCHED No4 KOOLAMA BAY (NEXT BEST BET) has the blinkers back on and gets top jockey Mark Zahra to ride. He loves this distance with four starts for two wins and a placing. He was never on the track when finishing fourth over 1300m here on July 28. He has a superior draw in (8) today and punters can get their money back.
No11 GIROUX has top jockey Damian Lane to ride and can improve on his second over 1300m at Bendigo on July 23, with the new addition of blinkers and a superior draw in gate (4).
No1 BLAZING SOCKS had a very tough run fresh and expect him to take benefit from that here.
No3 IRON MACHINE is back at his best trip and will be fresh with a 35-day break.
VALUE RUNNER: No3 IRON MACHINE
No10 PABLO’S EXPRESS was scratched from last week to be reserved for this race. He claimed a brilliant win over1600m in a maiden at his second start this campaign at Pakenham on July 14. Top jockey Craig Newitt rides from (5).
No16 PRATING was stretched beyond her ability when finishing eighth over 2100m at Sandown on July 12. She is far better suited over this distance and she can rebound on the soft surface here.
No7 BLUE VIPER ran a fighting second over 1600m at Echuca on July 27. That was a good effort by the six-year-old and he has an untarnished record of one start for one win at this track.
No6 VILLICANA is on the hunt for a third straight win here after landing smart country wins over the metric mile at his past two starts. He gets top jockey Andrew Mallyon as his new pillion and he likes the soft going.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 BLUE VIPER