NOTE: RACES are assessed for a Good 4. All horses considered starters unless notified by Monday at 1 PM. (N/R) denotes no rating.
FIVE RUNNERS, four last start winners. One of those is 1. CHARLIE CHAP (69) who was a good thing at home at Hawkesbury first-up off his trial and that’s exactly how it turned out; the only surprise was that he paid $3. Tomorrow is a step-up of course but two things; he should have won the Clarendon at the Hawkesbury standalone and two, once ran a huge race at Rosehill on a Saturday where he nearly won against mathematical impossibly. 3, MARISHKA (67) was $3.10 into $1.95 when she won here on debut two weeks back. It was only a neck margin but there so much quality in the win. She is bred to be Group horse and is in the right camp get there. 2. BEACON (65) a lovely big, strong Lonhro who won like good horse on debut at Wyong then was beaten by the barrier here next time. Trialled since, went well, nice horse.
KERRIN McEvoy has been riding in career best form for a while now. That ride on Ravi last Saturday in the Sheraco was sensational! McEvoy dons the familiar Godolphin colours here to partner 3. ISTRIA (67) first-up. The daughter of Reset is better off at 1400m and maybe a mile as well but I thought she’s been trialling like a horse that is jumping out it’s skin. So long as she doesn’t get too far back (and I can’t see why she would), I suspect she comes sailing late. If 2. COCOEXCEL (68) ran on race day like she trials, she’d have a slot in The Everest. Alas, she has been a very costly mare to follow. She’s got Blake Shinn up from a good draw in a small field and once again she’s off
lovely trial into this. 4. O’REILLY CYRUS (67) is 4s 2w at the trip and 3s 1w fresh. She’s had two trials, both of them good. Certainly has ability to win at the midweeks; she was second fav to win Karaka Millions when she was trained in NZ (ran 7th btn 2.9lens).
ALL eyes will be on 5. WOMAN (N/R) here and for good reason. She is a daughter of Frankel and the first foal of More Joyous who won 8 G1’s but best remembered perhaps for her unwitting role in the All Aged Stakes at her last ever start. Lest we forget that sad saga
racing! Woman has trialled like she’s going to be in G1’s sooner rather than later so obviously I have her on top. She is a beautiful looker, chestnut with a fair bit of white splashed her. The danger is/was 4. WILD ABOUT HER (N/R) but surely it won’t run. John Singleton owns them both — makes no sense at all to have one of them lose and Woman looks wound-up big time for this race. 1. FIFTH AFFAIR (N/R) made up a fair bit of ground in the straight to finish 2.7-lens 4th of 8 to Marishka who may well frank the form with a win in the opener today. Either way, Fifth Affair has always shown a bit of talent and will be strong late. RACE 4
APART from Woman, I reckon the best horse that will come through this meeting a mid to long term view is 7. PARROT (N/R). This 3YO colt is a Chris Waller-trained debutant. He was bought by a very, very smart man — Guy Mulcaster — for $110,000 at the Magic Millions. There are some signs in Paret’s pedigree that he’ll be a miler, maybe 2000m+, and that’s the way he has trialled. There is just something about him though that sets him apart; he moves like a good horse and finds the line with purpose. Unless the market says otherwise, I want to be on him. It’s a cracking good field though beginning with but not limited Paret’s stablemate 5. STAR OF THE SEAS (N/R) who is a three-quarter to Spieth. He ran a very encouraging second on debut to Sprinting To Win at Beaumont and for the record, Sprinting To Win won at Kembla on Saturday. I guess it is important to point out that Bowman rides Star Of The Seas while Schofield on Paret. Not sure who had the choice or whatever but happy to have Schofield on, he’s benne riding really well of late. Every other horse can win, true, but I am putting all the eggs into the Paret basket and see how market plays.
I’M not a weights and measures man most times but when I see horses capable of winning that get in with weights that are well below their talent then I do get a bit excited. Enter 7. LADY JIVAGO (73) who will shoulder 53kgs in this. Allow me to out that into some perspective. Lady Jivago is a 73 rater, so too are Classic Records and Old Man Sam and they both have 58kgs. The toppie, Nictock, rates 75 has 59kgs and the outside draw — that’s a big, big, big worry for him! In Times Of War is the top rater, 76, but she’s git 57.5kgs and frankly — she just run too many second to back at the price I suspect she might be here. So, I’ll stick with the good, honest Lady Jivago who isn’t a noted first-up performer but ran fantastic race behind Tango Rain and co at Rosehill on Aug. 26. May I say, Lady Jivago is 4s 2-0-1 when second-up which accounts for 50 per cent of her career wins. One more thing, she has won on heavy but three of her four wins are good tracks. She’s just going to need luck from gate two. I can find a hole in every other horse in the race so I am one out on the Lady with 3. OLD MAN SAM (73) and 4. IN TIMES OF WAR
(76) behind her.
HERE is the second ‘ weight’ horse on the card that go me pumped full of bravado. His name is 13. EXPLOSIVE SCENE (61) and he from the astute Marc Quinn camp. Marc is son of the late, great Pat Quinn and just as good a bloke as his Dad was. He is also very astute like he doesn’t come to town for ham rolls. Explosive Scene has 51.5kgs and you just don’t see too many horses these days carrying weights like that. Explosive Scene last raced on Jun. 18 winning the Wauchope Cup at his home track at Port. I went and watched his trial win Kempsey
fair enough, it was like me hitting up against Federer, he never going to lose — but hey, I thought he looked terrific; happy horse! 2. SMART AMELIA (76) makes her debut for Waller tomorrow having been with James Cummings for he 11 starts. Smart Amelia ran three consecutive thirds last prep in two G3’s then a Listed race at Scone so she has class on these and then some! She bigger fish to fry no doubt but has the as I say. 6. PIRACY (71) was fancied to win last year’s Breeders Plate; he didn’t of course — but he has really hit his straps this campaign with a 2nd and two wins.
I AM thinking 11. MAHALANGUR (63) run in, and wins, the Spring Stakes at Newcastle on Friday so enough said. He could win the Caulfield Guineas too, he is a very smart colt. If he is not here, I am happy to be with 5. WINE BUSH (68) from the Waller camp. I had $5 on him first-up at WF at $31 and thought he ran a super race finishing off from the back to be within 4.7-lens of the winner. I also noted how much horse had in reserve going past post — plenty to work with there methinks. 6. SAMBRO (71) is the Waller stablemate, he’ll have Bowman on but again, who rides what and how is not always clear cut. It’s not like ever Waller winner is Bowman on. Anyway, in so far as Sambro is concerned, he was $9 to $14 to win the G3 Mind Dynasty first-up. He ran seven of nine, too far behind Mahalangur (if he runs) to turn the tables. I have always liked 9. THINK LIKE A BIRD (64), the So You Think mare won very impressively in the Bm60 at Beaumont. She is for a good preparation it seems.
ANYONE who follows racing down around Canberra and the south coast will be well aware of 3. ALMOST COURT (70) from Barbara Joseph and Paul Jones yard. Reason being is that this Kiwi-bred stable acquisition has won three from three in Australia. On top of that, all wins have been very dominant indeed. You can see how he’s had to come to town — he’s just too good for them anywhere else. I for one, will be fascinated see how he measures up to the challenge. One little note for breeding buffs among us; Almost Court is by Alamosa who won four G1’s out of a mare named Cinder Bella who won two G1’s. 5. MANHATTAN SON (69) is one of mine so I feel I know him well enough to suggest that he’ll run a bold race tomorrow. I think be ridden back with cover and peel out four and five wide into the straight and have a real crack. 9. SOVEREIGAIRE (64) was beautifully ridden by Schofield last start at the Farm. The horse ran fifth beaten 1.3-len. I was watching him closing, I tipped him on top and had $5 at $61. The 1900m suits now.