Randwick for another Saturday meeting here in Sydney, this meeting was originally meant to be run at Warwick Farm, but with the weather set to be above 40 degrees out west, the smart decision was made in the best interests of the horses and the jockeys. We have nine races on the card in what shapes as an interesting day. Hugh Bowman returns from his Japanese sojourn and hasn’t been seen in Sydney since October and is only four wins behind in the premiership. Outside of that, rail true track will be good.
QUADDIES (races 6-7-8-9)
Skinny Play: 1 - 2,4,5 - 5 - 2,3,5,11
Wide Play: 1,2,5,8 - 1,2,4,5 - 2,4,5,8 - 2,3,4,5,8,11
BEST BET: R2 – 1. CANYONERO
Next Best Bet: R4 – 2. AWESOME PLUCK
Best Roughie: R9 – 5. SIR BARB
No1 BARBEQUE was brilliant when winning first-up, making a long run and getting up in the last few strides there at Wyong, it wasn’t much of a race but the way he won suggested there would be more to come. I have always been a fan of this Helmet gelding, and the spell may have done him that world of good.
*SCRATCHED* No2 CALCULATED was absolutely slaughtered by Shinn when second-up, he was a big market drifter that day and it was as if the market knew that Shinn would go forwad, then back then forward again. He should have won simple as that. The step up to 1400m suits as does the jockey change.
No3 SCREAM PARK has been very good at winning the last two races on good order, he won a joke of a race last start, but really pinned the ears back and charged through the line, hard to knock winning form, but he does come back in distance which is a touch of a concern, he may have that NZ race in mind.
No6 AQUA D’IVINA was quite good when winning second up at Wyong in pretty slick time. The step up in distance really suited her there and now coming up an extra 50m in distance and onto a bigger track is even better. She will probably get even further in time and will keep on improving.
VALUE RUNNER: No1 BARBEQUE
No1 CANYONERO (BEST BET) was fantastic on debut when running right through the line late in coming from an unsuitable position over the 1000m at this track. When looking at him in the yard, he was the clear standout from the mounting yard, but looked to have a lot of improvement to come from that. If he has taken that needed improvement, with the addition of the step up in distance from a good gate, he should be winning this and going onto better things.
No2 SOKUDO was good enough when running through the line first-up at Warwick Farm, coming back to his home track will aid him here as well as the added fitness second-up.
No10 FUTOOH will probably go back from the wide gate and Collett being booked, she didn’t get the best of rides on debut when she was flushed out wide early on and battled late. She should be much fitter here.
No9 EAWASE found the line well on debut behind Sweet Ava in what looks to be an ok race, back to the home track here is much more suitable and she should run well.
VALUE RUNNER: No10 FUTOOH
No4 FANNING backs up quickly out of last week’s race behind Brave Song and wasn’t too bad there, in what should prove to be a good race going forward. With Collett jumping aboard here, he will sit just behind the speed and look to pounce on them late.
No2 THE PHAROAH looks to be the likely leader here given there isn’t much speed in the race, and in the past he has shown he is at his best when he jumps and runs. He has changed stables to Richard Litt this time in, who has been going well as of late.
No1 FORTENSKY resumes with Bowman jumping on board here after two solid enough trials when asked not to do too much. He will need a touch further than this later in his preparation, but this does look to be a good kick-off point for him.
No3 VICEROY won well last start at Canterbury when finishing right over the top of them. He looks to have come back in quite good order and Pepper is placing him quite well and finding the right races to run him in.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 FANNING
No2 AWESOME PLUCK (NEXT BEST BET) wasn’t at all suited last start when leading and getting run over late by Savtiano. He looked to carry on in the mounting yard and should take a lot of improvement out of that run. The trial between the runs was quite good and should knock that freshness out of him. Bowman aboard from barrier 6 shows that he gets a good run just behind the speed here and will allow him to finish over the top of them.
*SCRATCHED* No4 KOPI LUWAK resumes off a long break here without a trial and comes out of what is a good race on debut. Watch the market with interest here, as well as the mounting yard.
No7 RUNWAY READY was a big winner last start at Ipswich for Dunn and now that he comes to the city he finds Angland who is his go-to man when it comes to Highways, respected.
No6 THE FRICK resumes here for Crockett, he has been talked about for a while as a potential Country Championships horse, this time in we will see if he is up to that level.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 KOPI LUWAK
No3 CELLARMAN just gets the perfect run in behind the speed here for Shinn and was a strong winner last start at Warwick Farm and ran a really good late sectional. It was good to see him take that Wednesday form to a Saturday race and he won well, no reason as to why he cannot go on with it again.
No7 MEDAILLE steps up in distance here after finding the line well last start behind Noire, that form should hold up quite well here. Two starts back in October she was a strong winner over 1550m at Canterbury. Bowman jumps on here and she should run well.
*SCRATCHED* No5 UNEQUIVOCAL will be giving them a start as she usually does but will be coming at them late, the race isn’t that well set up for her. But it isn’t the strongest race for a Saturday, the claim for King suits here, and although she hasn’t won in a while she is a chance.
No4 POSITIVE PROBLEMS looks the likely leader here with not much speed in the race here. She was good enough last week in a Group 3 race at Gosford. The form out of that should hold up well. McDonogh has been riding brilliantly since he came to Australia and they wouldn’t want him to get it too cheap in front.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 POSITIVE PROBLEMS
No1 GUARD OF HONOUR was fantastic when winning first-up at Muswellbrook with the big weight and running very good time. He'd had enough late there but still got the job done. He looks to have come back a better horse this time in and may well be ready to take that next step now.
No8 MY MAHER resumes here and has put a good record together in her short career. She has proven herself to be tactically versatile throughout and from the gate here, she can sit just behind the speed here. The two trials have been quite good coming in.
*SCRATCHED* No5 WANNA GET A WHAT comes out of some solid enough races at the country level and is a highway winner in the past and now finds Avdulla when coming to town. The 1000m is perfect for him, as he ran out of gas late over the 1050m at Wagga last start and gets a good weight drop here.
No2 FICKLE FOLLY is much more suited back to the 1000m here. She has been at her best over the 1000m throughout and did win well here two starts back. She then wasn’t too bad behind Glenall and Tactical Advantage last start. Randwick suits perfectly and RT will get everything out of her.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 WANNA GET WHAT
No5 QUEEN MISTY just got too far back last start when beaten by Live To Dream, but now comes back in distance here as do a few of these from the same race. I think from barrier 10, she will come across and sit closer to the speed here.
No2 LIVE TO DREAM was strong when winning on Boxing Day, when jumping and running. Shinn jumps on here and he comes back in distance after winning which is a touch confusing. She is a mare on the way up and should hold her form.
No4 SIREN’S FURY gets a chance to breakthrough here after some good runs this time in, coming out of some better form than this. The month between runs suits her here, as does the booking of Collett who is in brilliant form.
No1 WAHNG WAH finds a race in which she can finish up over the top of them, she is a quirky mare who can jump right out of the ground when you least expect it. The claim for King helps.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 SIRENS FURY
No5 NOIRE should be just winning this race after three big wins this time in from as many starts. She was a big drifter in the market last start and was a good winner, the runner up then won a Group 3 so the form has held up quite well. She is the mare on the way up against a bunch of horses who have been going around against each other.
No4 SAVOUREUX comes out of that same race last start as Noire and was third there, she keeps on improving and will run well again.
No2 SHOW A STAR has changed stables since the last preparation and gets a soft run on the map here for Collett. The trial coming in was quiet enough and she will run well fresh.
No1 COOLRING should jump and run from the barrier here. The claim for Innes gets him down to 57.5kgs and he will appreciate the 1400m of Randwick as he can roll along.
VALUE RUNNER: No4 SAVOUREUX
No5 SIR BARB (BEST ROUGHIE) was ok enough first-up in a race which wasn’t run to suit him. He got back and found the line in very good style there. At his second-up run last time in for the stable, he was a big winner at Goulburn. Collett jumps on here for Cunningham, and they have proven to be a formidable team and he looks to be crazy odds.
No2 SAMADOUBT was strong when winning last start at Canterbury, the apprentice goes off for Shinn here, who draws a perfect gate to dominate the race, and if he gets the soft lead they will struggle to run him down.
No11 MALAISE looks set to peak here, now that he is third-up from a spell. I think he was a touch flat second-up after a big effort with 62kgs fresh, I am a fan of his, dating back to his second to Hey Doc in the CS Hayes and he should go close here.
No3 LEVEL EIGHT gets Bowman on board here and is well set up to run a big race third up at home. He just got too far back last start in a race which wasn’t run to suit and with Bowman on from the good gate, he will be thereabouts.
VALUE RUNNER: No5 SIR BARB