Champ is back with Neil Evans

Pun­ters to flock to Rand­wick for the Queen’s re­turn

The Sportsman Weekend - - News - Good Luck @NeilE­vans­mail

THERE is no big­ger or eas­ier sales pitch than a gen­er­a­tional cham­pion horse!

Just like Phar Lap in the Great De­pres­sion, Tul­loch through the late 50s, Kingstown Town into the 80s, Makybe Diva’s three Cups and Black Caviar’s unbeaten clock-bust­ing road-trip; run it the peo­ple will swarm. Stand­ing, sit­ting or lean­ing, doesn’t mat­ter! Up to 8,000 would have prob­a­bly trot­ted out to Rand­wick to­mor­row with­out Winx, with her the crowd will be closer to 20,000 on a sunny, al­beit windy day, but with a rock-solid Good sur­face!

It will be the only time all day the cheer­ing out­weighs

bet­ting! Let’s face it, you know you’re deal­ing with rac­ing roy­alty when ev­ery press con­fer­ence af­ter piece of track­work is care­fully — some­times painfully — or­ches­trated with as much speed as a warped 33 and 1/3 old vinyl-coated record from the 70’s!

That said, cham­pi­onship trainer Chris Waller knows that ex­tra weight, mus­cle and bulk on the now 6YO su­per mare spells even greater power and dom­i­nance when she fi­nally screws down for the big Group 1 bat­tles this Spring, and ul­ti­mately a third straight Cox Plate.

“She is about 7 to 8kg heav­ier, and she’s done the work re­quired for Satur­day,” Waller said af­ter a stern gal­lop yes­ter­day morn­ing.

And while I think if she is ever go­ing to be vul­ner­a­ble this prepa­ra­tion it will be first-up to­mor­row, this is an oth­er­wise fair re­newal at best of the Group 2 War­wick Stakes, and even at 85 per cent Winx should still cruise home.

But in what will be a catand-mouse af­fair, with very mod­er­ate mid-race sec­tion­als, any fan­tasy of win­ning by more than 10 lens to grab Ar­ro­gate’s ul­ti­mate No 1 plan­e­tary global rat­ing is out of reach, de­spite the out­ra­geous $1.08 into $1.07 in a heart­beat at bet­ on Wed­nes­day night!

Given Winx has had two spot-on tri­als — the se­cond a win­ning one where she was lit­tle out of her com­fort zone squeezed up on the in­side be­fore push­ing through late — looms as enough for this to be lit­tle more than a trot and can­ter.

But for the record, the price is out­ra­geous! Car­ry­ing that lit­tle ex­tra weight and con­di­tion, jockey Hugh Bow­man may be forced to dig her up a lit­tle more ag­gres­sively from an in­side gate to po­si­tion mid­field.

She WILL get a lovely run, but the tempo won’t do her any favours. If there is an un­think­able knock­out, it likely to come from loom­ing 4YO star In­fer­ence ($19.00) — a se­ri­ously pow­er­ful en-

tire who has been pre­pared nicely off two soft tri­als.

The Hawkes gal­loper is a Spring star-in-wait­ing!

I also ex­pect Ecuador ($26.00) fresh to give a lot of cheek from the top, but Fox­play ($17.00) is likely to be bet­ter 2nd-up! My WAR­WICK STAKES Tips:


WINX; In­fer­ence; Ecuador (In-Or­der TRI)

Else­where, while the Group 2 Sil­ver Slip­per for the 3YO Fil­lies has a dis­ap­point­ing five starters,

Group 3 Show County Qual­ity (1200m) is a rip­ping re­newal.

Pun­ters wasted no time charg­ing into su­per-tal­ented 4YO mare Omei Sword, push­ing her $2.30 favourite, and off two soft tri­als, she’s ready to ex­plode; but at the value, I’ll be stick­ing with

high-class 5YO Spec­tro­scope ($6.00 into $5.50 bet­ also first-up off two im­pres­sive tri­als and a gal­loper that’s on the verge of be­com­ing a Spring star! My SHOW COUNTY Tips:

1. SPEC­TRO­SCOPE; 2. Omei Sword; 3. In­vader

And in a strong edi­tion of the Group 3 Toy Show Qual­ity (1300m), 5YO mares Dixie Blos­soms ($3.80) and Euro An­gel ($4.60) — both re­sum­ing — rate well clear of any­thing else, and should fight out the fin­ish. Dixie Blos­soms, off an out­stand­ing trial, is prob­a­bly that lit­tle more for­ward and gets the nod, while the re­turn­ing top­weight Zan­bagh ($10.00) — who prefers it wet­ter — is a big watch! My TOY SHOW Tips:

1. DIXIE BLOS­SOMS; 2. Euro An­gel; 3. Zan­bagh

* One of the very best Group 2 P.B. Lawrence (1400m) re­newals at WFA punc­tu­ates a big open card at Caulfield. And while the early cash tum­bled in for the re­turn­ing Weir-trained star sprinter-miler Black Heart Bart ($3.40 into $3.00 bet­, way out in the mar­ket I’ll be swing­ing be­hind Hu­mi­dor ($11.00) on his first step towards the stay­ing riches!

He’ll get a snug run back in the field, and with enough tempo on, can reel off a crack­ing last 400m. The re­ports are very good too about mul­ti­ple Group 1 win­ner Hart­nell ($3.80) who looks beau­ti­fully placed fresh; while I’m pre­pared to lay Lankan Ru­pee ($6.00) se­cond-up in this com­pany! My P.B. LAWRENCE Tips: 1. HU­MI­DOR; 2. Hart­nell; 3. Black Heart Bart

Cham­pion race­horse Winx is ex­pected to draw a large crowd to Rand­wick to­mor­row

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