Racing returns to Flemington for the first time since the 20th of Jan. After a good rest, I am anticipating the track will be in top nick with no distinct fast lanes. Tough to know how the Jocks will ride the straight races. Inside or hard outside fence won’t be a disadvantage.
Not a tough one to map. Super Too and Ball of Muscle will scorch the turf early and lead (likely towards the inside). Redzel and Formality could come across behind that duo or make their way to the outside. Hey Doc will look to be prominent with Rock Magic and Redkirk Warrior mid-field. Expecting Missrock, Terrivista and Supido to settle back.
Almost tips himself the son of Snitzel. Has legitimate claims to be the world’s best sprinter after convincing wins in the G1 Darley Classic and the Everest at his last two outings. 6:3-2-0 first-up, unbeaten in two attempts at Flemington, and a 5:2-2-0 record over the specialist 1000m distance. A 900m and 1000m trial will bring him here with a perfect platform and maps brilliantly to sit in behind the speed to lead on the outside rail himself, top jockey McEvoy will make the right move. Can’t say $1.80 is under the odds.
Couldn’t tip against him as the favourite. Any chance of black odds and I’d be diving in. Anchor in exotics the play.
Won this race last year in devastating fashion, charging through the line late to deny some very smart gallopers in Speith and Star Turn. Loves Flemington, with a record of 8:2-3-2 (both wins at G1 level) and loves it fresh, with 6 of his 11 wins coming first-up. Trialled fairly and will need luck from his gate but getting an each-way price to find out.
Taking the gamble that he’ll turn up under his preferred conditions. Can’t leave out of the exotics.
Last seen winning a very messy Mantikato over 1200m at Group 1 level as a $21 chance. There is a strong case the protest by C. Brown on In Her Time should’ve been upheld there. Another one who likes it Fresh (4:3-0-1 first-up) and Flemington (6:3-1-0). However, most of his Flemington runs have been over further and without a public trial he may find the 1000m too sharp with other goals in mind.
Inclined to risk at the distance first-up but would understand support.
The big question mark here is the blinkers being applied for the first time. The import has shown an affinity for straight racing, having won twice at Group level down the straight. However, he was disappointing last time out in the Darley Classic, finishing over 7L from Redzel in 7th. Another one that probably wants some more ground.
Could fill a hole if the blinkers provide the sharpness necessary.
Do have plenty of time for the West Aussie galloper. Loomed up in the Moir last time Fresh over the 1000m like he was going to go on with it but just missed a place into 4th. 8 tries at Group 1 level for only a third is the major query, might not be up to these.
Couldn’t have him in the numbers but keeping an eye on for other races during the carnival – nice type.
Owned the race last time out in the Mumm Stakes at the track and distance. 1000m fresh is his go with a record of 4:1-1-1 under these conditions. Will make his own luck up front but won’t be able to control the race like he has done in the past. 3 tries at Group 1 level for only one second (a Firm 2 at the Valley with on speed favours) is a slight knock. Trial win at Hawkesbury was solid.
Hard to see him toppling some of the classier gallopers. Chance for 3rd or 4th in wider exotics.
Typically, tough Kent galloper to line-up being first-up after 17 weeks without a public trial. A nother one that thrives fresh down the Flemington straight, amassing a record of 4:3-0-0 under these combined conditions. The market gets this horse right with all 7 of his wins coming as favourite and he’s $17 here after disappointing in 5th last time out in the McEwen stakes.
Will be given a task from the back. Risking.
Unlike the previous runner, this 4YO Mare has a history of letting the market (and hence punters) down. Often seen savaging the line late with a flashing light only to find trouble the next start. She was finally trained as a sprinter last prep after some odd placements in her 3YO year (Guineas, Oaks). Last win did come over 1000m but below this level. Trialled up OK but hard to trust.
Enigma. Leaving out as she’ll need luck in running. Could tease and run on yet again however.
Possesses devastating early speed, will lead and make all from the front. Drawing 5 will allow her to find any fast lane if one eventuates. Ticks plenty of boxes for this affair. Thrives at the distance 7:5-1-0, loves it fresh with two wins from 3 first-up runs and races well down the straight with a second and a fourth from two attempts. Two trials over the 800m have been typically slick, giving her a fitness edge. A second and two wins from her last 3 outings, all in good time.
Shouldn’t be $21, value of the race.
The lone Filly of the race looks right up to these on form. Maps nicely to trail the favourite wherever he goes. Ran an excellent race at her only attempt down the straight, 3rd in the Group 1 Coolmore Stud stakes - a typically good form reference. Blinkers going on for the first time should provide sharpness for the 1000m. Unbeaten first-up and no stranger to racing at the top level. Taking the gamble that this crop of 3YO’s is good enough to take on the more seasoned gallopers.
Right in the mix in open grade, $10 good value.
1. Redzel $1.80
2. Super Too $21
3. Formality $11
4. Terravista $8.50
Compare bookmaker odds for the Lightning Stakes here.