Have A Heart

A de­tailed pre­view of Satur­day’s fea­ture Group 1 with Greg Splet­ter and Ray Hickson

The Sportsman Weekend - - Front Page -

HE was beaten in Ade­laide last week but Dar­ren Weir’s hardy gal­loper Black Heart Bart can bounce back with a Group 1 win at Eagle Farm to­mor­row.

In rare miss, ‘Bart’ could only fin­ish sev­enth in the Good­wood but he rarely puts two un­placed ef­forts to­gether and is the horse to beat in the $700,000 Dar­ley Kings­ford Smith Cup (1300m).

A win by Black Heart Bart would break the dead­lock be­tween lead­ing Group 1 train­ers Dar­ren Weir and Chris Waller who have both won eight ma­jors in 2016-17 to date.

Waller is rep­re­sented by Doomben 10,000 run­ner-up Counterattack.

1. BLACK HEART BART

GS: Bart’s back­ing up here fol­low­ing an even run in the Good­wood last week­end and while it was a bit dis­ap­point­ing I couldn’t imag­ine him putting two bad runs to­gether. Nor could imag­ine Dar­ren Weir back­ing him up if he wasn’t go­ing well. Looked as though would belt them when held up at the top of the straight in Ade­laide and just seemed to run out of puff when run came. This field is quite unin­spir­ing out­side Bart and while I am typ­i­cally keen to take him on at the shorter quotes, against these I’ll back him in. Cur­rently $3.40 but we’ll get bet­ter than that. Hardly a stel­lar de­but for the coun­try’s new­est Group 1. It looks more like heat than a fi­nal.

RH: Last week I was happy to talk up Bart’s virtues in the Good­wood but I have a very dif­fer­ent view of him go­ing into this race. Maybe it’s to my detri­ment but I reckon he’s the lay of the day. This is why. We’re rac­ing on an Eagle Farm track that’s barely budged from a heavy rating de­spite sum­mer-like con­di­tions for al­most a week. It’s a ‘han­dle it or don’t sur­face’ and Bart’s record in the wet isn’t flat­ter­ing. His three soft track starts were all 5s, which I don’t rate as soft, and he was beaten, and he was lapped on a heavy at As­cot al­beit at 1800m. Class will carry him a long way but I’m far less keen than you.

2. UN­DER THE LOU­VRE

GS: I have been a fan of him but now that he has moved up to the top level does find it aw­fully hard to win. He wasn’t sighted first-up in a stan­dard open sprint down the straight at Flem­ing­ton. I know he car­ried 62kg but he only beat three home and was priced as though would strug­gle. He was go­ing a mile bet­ter when he beat Bart in the Strad­die last year and I’m pass­ing here at the $16.

RH: This is clearly one throw at the stumps be­fore he goes to stud. I know we see some funny form re­ver­sals at times but I couldn’t make a case for him to turn the tables on Bart from the Strad­die last year be­ing 3.5kg worse off. Happy to sug­gest he can’t win.

3. JAPONISME

GS: An­other dud ef­fort in the 10,000 a fort­night ago un­der favourable con­di­tions, why should to­mor­row be any dif­fer­ent? Granted this is eas­ier, but he has been out of a place at eight of his nine starts since run­ning a cracker in the BTC Cup up here last year. I’m nowhere near him even at the $26.

RH: It’s amaz­ing how he’s changed from one of the most con­sis­tent three-year-olds of his year into be­ing pretty much un­com­pet­i­tive at Group com­pany, aside from the oc­ca­sional handy ef­fort at Moonee Val­ley. I can’t see him fin­ish­ing in front of those who beat him home the 10,000.

4. MU­SIC MAG­NATE

GS: Jeff Lloyd said he didn’t han­dle the go­ing in the 10,000 and he re­ally did look un­com­fort­able in run­ning, and that’s leav­ing aside his over­rac­ing for most of the trip. He nor­mally trav­els just fine in go­ing and was able to beat a handy field in the Vic­tory here the run prior, but I can’t get ex­cited. It’s very hard to win a Group 1 off a last plac­ing.

RH: Per­haps the fact he han­dled the go­ing at Eagle Farm, granted he had a soft lead, but not at Doomben might sug­gest we for­give him a lit­tle bit. At least he should get through it. He also had a bit of

tor­rid run in the 10,000 but, then again, he has no favours with a wide gate. Don’t think he’ll re­peat his last plac­ing, don’t think he’ll do a Glas­ton­bury ei­ther.

5. COUNTERATTACK

GS: Well, he out­per­formed my ex­pec­ta­tions in the 10,000 so good on him for that. Fin­ished stronger than any­thing else and only a half length from Redzel on the line, mir­ror­ing his re­sult in Hall Mark Stakes in Syd­ney last month. He doesn’t win many, but if there is ac­tu­ally fire among all this smoke then he has to be a gen­uine hope. Fair odds at $7.50, but with a nine-run los­ing se­quence next to his name I have bet­ter al­ter­na­tives for saver.

RH: Hmm, he’s yet an­other of the seem­ingly end­less list horses headed to stud this year and a Group 1 win wouldn’t hurt his pro­file for that gig. Even if it does fol­low nine de­feats. He also sur­prised me last start but he did man­age to put two solid ef­forts to­gether. You’ll go broke back­ing him but, as I com­mented in the 10,000, he’s a quad­die killer if you leave out.

6. CLEARLY IN­NO­CENT

GS. What a win that was at Scone. I’m not sure de­mo­li­tion in the Luskin Star equates to vic­tory at Group 1 level but he has cer­tainly found his mojo and is com­ing into this race in peak form. I’m tak­ing a stab that he’s not up to these, and at just $6.50 I can work around him on the score of value, but he was very im­pres­sive.

RH: If Redzel can win a Group 1 at WFA then Clearly In­no­cent is cer­tainly ca­pa­ble. That’s not meant to be a knock on Redzel, the Snow­dens have re­ally found key this this year, but I al­ways thought Clearly In­no­cent was ca­pa­ble at level. Per­haps he’ll be bet­ter off in the Strad­die but given he’s won a Rand­wick soft 6 I wouldn’t be too wor­ried about Eagle Farm. If he gets to the right part of the track will be in fin­ish.

7. START WON­DER­ING

GS: He bat­tled on okay in the 10,000 first-up off a break but I doubt he’ll get any closer to them to­mor­row. He has drawn poorly and I can see him hav­ing a hor­rid run in transit. De­spite the weaker op­po­si­tion and a longer trip I’m leav­ing him out.

RH: There were worse runs than his in the 10,000 but at the same time he will need to find a few lengths. He has go for­ward from the gate with Jun­gle Edge drawn out­side him and that’s his only chance to be in the fin­ish for mine.

8. JUN­GLE EDGE

GS: He has been get­ting the right con­di­tions un­der­foot and is, sur­pris­ingly, well up to these given we will be rac­ing on a soft track. It’s a great deal tougher than the Group 3 field he belted the other day, but he does have a cou­ple of out­stand­ing re­sults to his credit this time in. A third in the All Aged be­hind Ti­vaci af­ter set­ting speed, and a nar­row de­feat be­hind Rus­sian Revo­lu­tion and Redzel in the Galaxy? He likes to lead and no­body in this field will be want­ing to press the is­sue, I can see him land­ing front on set­tling with­out spend­ing too much. From there he can give it a shake and at $12 is def­i­nitely saver ma­te­rial.

RH: I still can’t be­lieve they took the blinkers off him for the Wan­goom. You know what you’re go­ing to get with Jun­gle Edge, he’s

look to lead and he laps up the wet con­di­tions. Given his run in the All Aged, which was stronger than this, you’d be mad to leave him out of the main hopes.

9. IN HIS STRIDE

GS: Un­placed over this course and dis­tance on a soft-7 last time in a lowly class six with just 56kg. He’d be half chance in the Bm95 ear­lier in the day no weight on his back and in­stead he is meet­ing Black Heart Bart at level weights. I’m at a loss.

RH: Puz­zling place­ment, I can’t find any­thing to sug­gest he’s even a re­mote chance of win­ning. If you want look for pos­i­tives, he’s fairly con­sis­tent so he could fin­ish mid­field but that’s with the rosiest coloured glasses on.

10. HOPFGARTEN

GS: On the plus side he goes very well here, he likes the con­di­tions, and he put in a very tidy run be­hind Mu­sic Mag­nate in Vic­tory Stakes here first-up, but I do have a big ques­tion mark over him mea­sur­ing up to this level. On his day he’s rough place hope.

RH: For one rea­son or an­other had no luck at all for quite some time. If there’s an up­set this is the one I’d be look­ing at be­cause we know he’s ca­pa­ble this level. If you’re com­pet­i­tive in a Mel­bourne spring you can be com­pet­i­tive in Bris­bane’s win­ter. He was only two lengths from Sense Of Oc­ca­sion in the Villiers and given he’s run well at the ‘new’ Eagle Farm I can’t dis­miss him.

11. DERRYN

GS: If they give him an­other sea­son of rac­ing this bloke will pick up a Group 1, and he is a gen­uine threat to­mor­row. He hit the line very nicely in the 10,000 last time af­ter giv­ing them a big start, and he had won two of his pre­vi­ous three out­ings in good com­pany. Ex­tra trip suits, nice gate, I thought per­haps he might be a point or so longer than $6.50 but it’s not tragic value. What­ever his re­sult to­mor­row, they’ll have hours of fun nam­ing his prog­eny.

RH: I agree he’s a gen­uine threat, in fact think the one to beat. He’s had such great prepa­ra­tion, tak­ing slow steps up, and I loved the way he hit the line in the 10,000. I don’t think what­ever go­ing Eagle Farm throws up will bother him given the way he ate up the mud on Golden Slip­per day and soft 7 at Rand­wick. While I wouldn’t have had him pegged as a Group 1 win­ner ear­lier this prep he can win this, and more if he’s stick­ing around next sea­son.

12. TY­COON TARA

GS: Two runs into her pre­vi­ous cam­paign, we would have been all over her in this, but two starts back this prepa­ra­tion dis­ap­point­ing. Beaten eas­ily firstup in the Sap­phire then dropped back to an open sprint and still missed a place. Her form when last in work was out­stand­ing well up to this, and she was un­touched

her easy trial win last week so maybe she’s ready to turn the cor­ner. Of all those up around $20 mark she looks the best of them. Per­haps a spot in quad­die.

RH: I had her on top in that race at Caulfield and she was only fair to be very kind. Would you back Rich Charm, as handy as he is, in this race? I doubt she’s come up time in and given in the brood­mare sale com­ing up this is a throw at the stumps from the bound­ary.

13. EGYP­TIAN SYM­BOL (SCR)

14. IM­PEND­ING

GS: It’s a big leap of faith to sug­gest Im­pend­ing could beat these, but he does have abil­ity and plenty of up­side. His re­sults have been per­haps a lit­tle dis­ap­point­ing this time in, though he did place in the Ar­row­field last start and should have fin­ished closer. Not enough value in the $16 to get me in­ter­ested, but put him up at $26 and I might be swayed.

RH: Im­pend­ing is one of the more tal­ented three-year-olds in the Godol­phin camp but he’s un­der­achiev­ing. I think Derryn has taken a step up since he beat Im­pend­ing by cou­ple at Rand­wick and we’re yet to see if this colt has (or even can). As you’ve said, it’s quite a leap of faith. Comes here off cou­ple nice tri­als but from bar­rier one come race seven it’s go­ing to take a pearler from the Doyler get him home. Place chance.

Derryn Pic Grant Guy

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