Racing returns to Moonee Valley for a day meeting and is the last Saturday for punters to fill up their Christmas stocking for the big day on Monday.
Looks to be a good and competitive card with Oncidium Ruler (Race 5) and Wise Hero (Race 8) looking the pick of the day’s nine races.
Overall there is good value in most races with a couple of tough ones for those punters who thrive on a challenge.
The False Rail will be back to the true position and the track is rated perfectly as a Good 4 (Thursday).
The weather is tipped to remain fine with a few clouds about. Good luck to all and have a safe and peaceful Christmas!
QUADDIES (races 6,7,8,9)
Skinny Play: 6,14 – 1,2 - 7,14 – 5,9
Wide Play: 6,7,13,14 – 1,2,4 – 6,7,14 – 1,5,8,9
BEST BET: R5 – 1. ONCIDIUM RULER
Next Best Bet: R8 – 14. WISE HERO
Best Roughie: R9 – 7. CURRAGH
No8 BONUS D’ORO was backed from $15 into $11 before finishing a fighting second over 1400m against her own sex at Pakenham on December 14. She faces a similar field here but drops in weight from 56kg to 54.5kg. Stable rider Dean Yendall rides and makes strong claims.
No2 MILES OF KRISHAN looms as the biggest danger her narrow second over 1600m at Morphettville on December 9. Ace Perth apprentice Fred Kersley replaces Jason Holder and his 2kg claim reduces her impost down to 56kg. She is back against her own sex, which is an advantage.
No6 HEAVENLY DESCENT faced a bog track and ploughed through the mud well to finish second over 1600m at Sandown on December 2. The four-year-old mare loves this track with a sparkling record of three starts for two wins. She looks well weighted on 55.5kg today.
No4 STORMSABREWING drops from 59kg to a more comfortable 56.5kg and gets top jockey Mark Zahra as her new partner. She was working home well out wide when finishing sixth over 1400m against her own sex at Pakenham on December 14. From barrier four should get a cosy run.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 STORMSABREWING
No10 PLEASURING was plunged into a $2.60 favourite before finishing a close second over 1400m at Warrnambool on November 30. Victoria’s leading jockey Damian Lane takes the reins for Darren Weir and they have proven a lethal combination. She is nicely drawn in gate seven.
No1 KARDASHING was making her debut at this tack when finishing a strong second over 1200m on December 8. That was against her own age and sex - the same as here. Ben Melham replaces an apprentice and she will again carry 58kg under this scale. She has been knocking on the door.
No2 HELIX PARK made a fabulous debut to post an easy win over 1200m F&M maiden at Mornington on December 8. She was backed into a $3.50 favourite that day and gets No. 1 stable jockey Regan Bayliss to partner today. She does go up a kilo to 57.5kg for her second career start.
No6 SKY LAKE was returning from a five-week let up when finishing a sound second over 1400m at Pakenham on the synthetic track on December 3. She makes her debut at The Valley but has the experienced Michael Dee to guide her from barrier eight. Has room for improvement.
VALUE RUNNER: No6 SKY LAKE
No15 VUNGERS is one of many chances in an open affair. But did show promise at debut at this course with a good second over 1528m here on December 15. He was easy in the betting at $5 and fought back strongly when he was challenged for the lead going down by .4 of a length. Makes appeal.
No6 GUANGZHOU showed he was ready for this assignment with a strong second over 1400m at Bendigo on December 14. He defied a big betting drift from $4.80 to $8 that day, but he has again drawn awkwardly in gate 16. Apprentice Fred Kersley’s 2kg claim reduces his impost to 59kg today.
No1 KRUSTY resumed from a four-week break with a strong second over 1450m in a feature at Tatura on December 10. With Brandon Stockdale’s 2kg claim will have his impost reduced to 60.5kg. He is a former Darwin galloper who excelled in the North. Drawn to be forward in gate three.
No13 STAR PATRIOT the ear muffs come off for this race. Latest she ran a great second over 1600m against her own sex at Ballarat on November 28. With the in-form apprentice Stephanie Thornton’s 3kg claim her weight drops down to 54kg on the limit. Looms as a light-weight hope.
VALUE RUNNER: No13 STAR PATRIOT
No1 O’LONERA swept away to an effortless 2 length win over 2000m at Pakenham last start on December 9. He was backed from $14 into $9.50 and got the chocolates. He does not strike strong opposition here and with apprentice Ethan Brown’s 2kg claim will carry 60kg top-weight. Good chance.
No3 SHARDS Team Hayes is giving Perth apprentice Fred Kersley plenty of scope and his 2kg claim here helps this fellow dropping his weight to a more comfortable 57kg. He struck a bog track when running a solid fourth over 1800m at Sandown on December 2 and has a good record at this track.
No9 THE THUG fought hard but was no match for the winner in the end finishing a good second over 2040m here on December 15. He gest top jockey Damian Lane to partner today and drops 2kg to 56.5kg. That is a big bonus and he has been placed second at his six attempts at this track.
No8 FONTEIN LAD sat just off the pace when finishing fourth to O’Lonera over 2000m at Pakenham last start on December 9. He drops a half kilo to 56.5kg and regular rider Nikita Beriman keeps the ride. He was a $4.60 favourite last time and will be out to reward his supporters from gate six.
VALUE RUNNER: No9 THE THUG
No1 ONCIDIUM RULER (BEST BET) boasts an unbeaten record over this distance and at this track with one start for one win. Latest he ran a strong third over 2500m at Pakenham on December 9 when carrying 56.5kg. He gets Ethan brown’s 2kg claim to help with his weight increase and will carry 57kg today. He was a winner over 2000m at Flemington three starts ago and is in outstanding form over the longer distances.
No5 BLING DYNASTY is on the limit on 54kg and his form has been top class with two seconds and a win at his past three starts.
No3 SURVIVED led all of the way to post an emphatic 4.9 length win over 2400m at Mt Gambier last start. This is up in class but cannot fault.
No4 DANDY GENT finished only two lengths behind the winner in the Pakenham Cup (2400m). Worth noting.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 DANDY GENT
No14 JUST HIFALUTIN looks to have good claims in an even race. She has posted two wins from her past two starts including a last start win over 1200m here on December 8. She was backed into a $3.80 favourite that day and with top apprentice Ben Allen to steer has the pace to cross from 17.
No6 KING RIVER was caught up in heavy traffic and had to weave between runners to finish a sound sixth over 1000m at Pakenham on December 9. That was his first start in Victoria from a long spell and he will take maximum benefit from the outing. Has ace jockey Damien Oliver to guide today.
No11 DATA POINT was resuming from a long spell when finishing sixth over 1300m on a bog track at Sandown on December 2. He is back on top of the ground here and has a solid second up record of three starts for three seconds. He also goes well at this track and can repay favourite backers.
No13 ESSENCE OF TERROR has the blinkers going back on again after her last-start fighting sixth over 1100m against her own sex at Caulfield on December 16. The in-form Chris Symons has stuck to her and she will be at each-way odds at $9 in early betting. She loves this track too.
VALUE RUNNER: No13 ESSENCE OF TERROR
No1 BEL SONIC gets Golden Slipper winning jockey ben Melham to replace Daniel Stackhouse. He defied a betting drift of $5 to $9 to win comfortably over 1000m at Pakenham on December 9. That was first-up against three-year-olds carrying 59kg. He is down to 58kg against his own age here.
No4 CRYSTAL SPIRIT showed he was on target for a bright campaign with a brilliant first-up win over 1100m on the synthetic track at Pakenham on December 3. He was backed into a $2.35 favourite on that occasion and carried 58kg. He drops to 56kg and gets ace rider Damian Lane here.
No2 MURAAHIB is a nicely bred three-year-old who was gelded during his spell. He showed promise two wins and two placings at eight starts for Team Hayes last campaign. He was lifted into the top echelon during the spring in Melbourne and performed okay.
No6 BLACKWOLF RUN was strongly fancied at his sole start when finishing third over 1000m here on November 26 last year. The long spell suggests he has injury woes and he drops a kilo to 56kg here on his debut. He has been gelded and he gets the blindfold into the starting gates for the first time.
VALUE RUNNER: No2 MURRAAHIB
No14 WISE HERO (NEXT BEST BET) was plunged into a $3.60 favourite at his first start back from a long spell and narrowly missed getting the money when second over 1000m at Pakenham on December 9. Hong Kong was after him as a three-year-old and he bounded back from a 30-week spell last start. He drops 2.5kg on the weight he carried first-up and ace rider Michael Dee keeps the mount.
No7 KEN’S DREAM was a classy three-year-old last season and he has an excellent first-up record.
No12 MODERN WONDER has the score on the board with two wins from six starts this campaign.
No6 NASDEX led all of the way last start at Pakenham when clawing to a narrow win at $5.50.
VALUE RUNNER: No6 NASDEX
No5 AMADEUS posted an impeccable 2.25 length win in the Golden Bullion (1400m) at Pakenham last start on December 9. He carried 57kg that time and rises to 58kg today and gets Craig Williams replacing Luke Currie. He was plunged from $26 into $11 last start. Has the gate in three to dominate.
No9 WIDGEE TURF ploughed through the mud to post a flawless 2 length win over 1300m at Sandown on December 2. He will be back on the dry here and he will be fitter for the first-up outing. Billy Egan keeps the ride and he will drop a half-kilo to 57.5kg and has barrier four. Keep safe here.
No8 WALL STREET WOLF has the blinkers going on and the pacifiers coming off here. Latest he ran a steady fourth to Amadeus in the Gold Bullion (1400m) at Pakenham on December 9. He had to do it tough that day when he sat three deep for most of the journey. With a superior run makes appeal.
No7 CURRAGH (BEST ROUGHIE) showed promise last campaign and gets top jockey Mark Zahra to ride first-up from a 25-week spell. He has not trialled but he is from an astute betting stable and he boasts a big first-up record of three wins at four starts. He has drawn badly in 13 but should run home well.
VALUE RUNNER: No7 CURRAGH