With the Melbourne Cup carnival finished last month racing has swung between Sandown and the leading provincial tracks over the past four weeks.
This Saturday racing for the premium day of the week heads out to Pakenham for the running of the Pakenham Cup. With the weather clearing after some wet days a good crowd should converge on the attractive course for the nine-race card. An interesting day with many gallopers returning from spells with the Melbourne autumn carnival to kick off next month. Others are getting ready for the $10 Magic Millions race-day on the Gold Coast in early January.
QUADDIES (races 6,7,8,9)
Skinny Play: 4,8 – 3 – 1,3 – 9,11
Wide Play: 4,5,8,9 – 1,2,3 – 1,3,7,8 – 1,5,9,11
BEST BET: R6 – 8. ANOTHER COLDIE
Next Best Bet: R7 – 3. ONCIDIUM RULER
Best Roughie: R4 – 6. KING RIVER
No8 BOOM CHICKA BOOM demolished his rivals when skating to a 5.5 length win over 1000m maiden at Cranbourne on November 15. That was only his second start so looks to have heap of improvement up his sleeve, but faces tougher opposition here. At the more liberal odds at $3.90 than $1.26 last time.
*SCRATCHED* No3 CAMILA LUCINDA has been in splendid form and can loom as a big chance again on her last-start win over 1000m at Moonee Valley on December 1. Apprentice Stephanie Thornton’s 3kg claim will reduce her impost to a comfortable 56.5kg. Will sport blinkers for the first time today.
No6 THE LAUNCHER looks to have ability and can lift to the rise in class here on his debut win when coasted to a comfortable victory over 1114m in a maiden at Moe on November 21. John Allen is the new rider and will be at nice odds at $6 here after starting at $3.80 last time.
No4 JE SUIS TYCOON faces a nice drop in class on last start 10th in Group 3 1200m at Caulfield on October 14. Showed ability last campaign with a well-backed win over 1000m at Warrnambool in May. She ran a solid third over third in 800m trial at Cranbourne on November 22.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 JE SUIS TYCOON
No2 RED IS THE ROSE was given a three-week break ninth over 1500m group 3 at Sandown on November 18. She was a smashing winner over 1520m at Moonee Valley two starts ago and can rebound in a moderate field here. WA apprentice Fred Kersley’s 2kg claim drops her weight to 57kg.
No5 SOHO RUBY was towering home over them when finishing third over 1200m mares’ race at Ballarat on November 25. Got out to as much as $6.50 before being backed into $4.40 last start. Will be tight today at $3.70 and has a great second-up record. Should keep very safe.
No4 BONUS D’ORO was chasing steady enough without impressing when running sixth over 1600m at Ballarat on November 25. Was backed from $7 into $5.50 that day and she was second-up from a spell. Gets top stable jockey Dean Yendall to ride today and drops a kilo to 56kg on last start.
No3 STORMSABREWING resumes here from a four-week spell. Was a solid third over 1700m at Flemington on November 7 during the Melbourne Cup carnival. Has drawn perfectly in gate four and has top apprentice Beau Mertens to ride this time. Likes this distance
VALUE RUNNER: No4 BONUS D’ORO
No6 GET THE PICTURE Was a $3.40 favourite when showing his rivals a clean pair of plates for a comfortable win over 1950m at Morphettville last Saturday. He faces a quick back up but he did do it comfortable and gets Craig Williams to ride on 57.5kg. Looks value at $8.50.
No7 FONTEIN LAD was returning to the track from a three-week break when finishing strongly to run second over 2060m at Cranbourne on November 24. The four-year-old has won up to 2200m and should strip fitter with the run over 2000m under his belt. Looks to have great claims today.
*SCRATCHED* No3 CRAFTY DEVIL is from the Darren Weir camp and Weir does have the ability to hold up his gallopers so despite a long campaign with three wins from past five starts. Latest ran a good third in the Ararat Cup (2000m) on November 12. Weir has booked stable jockey John Allen to ride.
No4 MULTITUDE is a Sydney galloper who was given a trial over 1200m at Warwick Farm on November 6. Did a good job to run third and will be improved on the outing with a month between starts. Zac Spain has 2kg claim and his allowance drops his weight to 56kg. The stable is firing well.
VALUE RUNNER: No8 GET THE PICTURE
No9 WISE HERO has an impeccable record first-up of two starts for two wins. Was given a long spell with 30 weeks off. Was a top class three-year-old last season with a record of five starts for three wins and a second. Group 1 winning jockey Michael Dee is the new rider.
No3 INVINCIBLE AL with Talia Hope’s 3kg claim will carry 57.5kg. Was impressive at winning over the 955m dash at Moonee Valley on November 17. That was his first start from a spell and he has a good second-up record too of three starts for two wins. Looks a strong chance.
No6 KING RIVER (TOP ROUGHIE) is a former WA galloper making his Victorian debut today. He has bar plates on and has the blinkers removed. Showed plenty of ability in Perth and would keep a close eye on here fresh. Has a fresh record of two wins and a third. Ben Allen’s claim drops his weight to 58kg.
No11 STAR STEALER was given a long 25-week spell to recover after taking a heavy tumble at Moonee Valley back in June. Has a dazzling record fresh of three wins and a third and is from the top yard of Darren Weir. Having drawn gate 13 is a negative but has top rider John Allen to guide.
VALUE RUNNER: No6 KING RIVER
No1 JUNGLE EDGE is one of the best wet trackers in Australia and is rolling high with two straight wins at Sandown. Carried 59kg and demolished his rivals by 2.5 lengths 1000m at Sandown last Saturday. With Cartwright’s 3kg claim carries 60.5kg today. The higher weight is some concern.
*SCRATCHED* No2 CHAMOIS ROAD was a very good winner at Morphettville two starts ago. Latest effort battled on steadily to run seventh 1200m at Ballarat on November 25. Stephanie Thornton’s 3kg claim drops his weight down to a mere 52.65kg here. Lightweight chance.
No4 STELLAR COLLISION is resuming from a 26-week spell. He is from the Darren Weir stable and has an excellent fresh record of two wins at three starts. Won the Apache Cat back in March at Cranbourne. Has no weight on 54.5kg today. Stable jockey Dean Yendall takes the ride.
No8 PROUD WOLF was a smart winner over 1000m at Seymour three starts ago. Latest he ran a top second on a bog track over 1200m at Ballarat on November 25. With a good draw in gate five and Talia Hope’s 3kg claim to carry only 51kg today would keep most safe.
VALUE RUNNER: No8 PROUD WOLF
No8 ANOTHER COLDIE (NEXT BEST BET) is chasing his third Cup today and is on a rampage after claiming the scalps in the Country Cup (1600m) at Flemington on November 9 and then won the Donald Cup (1620m) as a white-hot $1.45 on November 19. Apprentice Ben Allen gets the ride and the limit on 54kg. Makes strong contention here.
No4 OUR BOTTINO was an impressive winner of the Horsham Cup (1800m) at last start on December 3. Was a good winner over 1550m at Morphettville three starts back.
No11 SILVERA has two good wins at four starts this campaign and is one of the dangers.
No9 CARRAIG AONAIR is from a top stable and has top jockey Craig Williams here to ride.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 OUR BOTTINO
No3 ONCIDIUM RULER (NEXT BEST BET) struck a bog track when running a strong second in last Saturday week’s Ballarat Cup (2400m), carrying 54kg. He will go to 56.5kg today and Beau Mertens keeps the ride for astute trainer Mick Kent. Has drawn perfectly in gate six and is a proven stayer having won up to 2500m. Was a fighting winner over 2000m at Flemington at his prior start.
No2 GREY LION was backed into $3.60 favouritism when finishing third in the Ballarat Cup.
No9 GOODWOOD ZODIAC has the early speed to muster to overcome a wide alley (12). Top stable.
No1 DE LITTLE ENGINE has been a most enduring stayer and looks to be a chance in this field.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 GOODWOOD ZODIAC
No1 BURNING FRONT likes to race up on the pace and will be fresh having returned from a three-week break. Ran a top fifth over 1300m in Group 3 at Sandown November 8. Has a wide alley in gate 15, which is a setback but has speed to overcome. Top apprentice Ben Allen ride at 60kg.
No7 WILLI WILLI has won three of his past five starts. Has shown a heap of grit to claw to narrow wins over 1400m and 1600m at Bendigo and Flemington during the winter. Likes the wet and has a good record when racing fresh. With Beau Mertens on would respect.
No8 WALL STREET WOLF will wear pacifiers for the first time. Fought hard to run a close second over 1300m at Bendigo on November 14. Won over 1206m at Benella back in September three starts ago. Group 1 winning rider Cory Parish rides from gate 13.
No3 GRANDE ROSSO was freshened up with four weeks off after running fifth over 1400m in a Group 3 at Flemington on November 9 during the Melbourne Cup carnival. Leading stable jockey Regan Bayliss rides today for Team Hayes. Has good claims from inside alley in one.
VALUE RUNNER: No8 WALL STREET WOLF
No11 STAR MAJOR was an impressive winner at his debut on a soft track over 1400m at Sale last June. Then ran third over 1400m at Geelong first up on October 25. Has had runs spaced and can overcome a wide alley in 11. Like with Nikita Beriman in the saddle.
No1 IMPERATOR AUGUSTUS with the 2kg claim of apprentice Ethan Brown will have his weight reduced to a more comfortable 59.5kg. He ran a close fifth over 1550m at Morphettville on November 25. Had finished second or first at his previous four starts.
No9 COLUMN was given a three-week respite after claiming a tearaway 3 length win over 1600m here on November 16. Was trapped deep for most of the journey but had too much toe for rivals pulling away for a faultless victory. Down a kilo to 57.5kg.
No12 FLORIDA KEYS gave a good sight against her own sex to run second over 1800m at Sandown on November 29. She gets Ben Thompson’s 1.5kg claim to reduce her weight down to 54.5kg today. That is two kilos less than what she carried last time.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 COLUMN