I was super impressed with the way PRUE’S ANGEL sailed past them two weeks ago in town and although I’m a bit late to the party, I’m happy to take the $3.20. It was her second win in as many starts this campaign having carried tomorrow’s impost of 59kg to victory at Ipswich first-up. Small field and drawn well, she should be in a great position to pounce on straightening. AWAKE THE STARS had to give the winner 8.5kg last weekend and it proved just a little too much, going down narrowly to Francisca on the line. This mare doesn’t do much wrong and she does go well here, but I think the toppy will have the drop on her. Not a huge amount between them, but I’d have this one on second line of betting. SORNJA meets Prue’s Angel a touch better at the weights after taking ground off her at Doomben last time. She’ll be tucked away back on the fence and may need some luck to get clear running but is an easy inclusion for trifecta players.
Sticking with the Tony Gollan-Brad Stewart combo here in A MAN TO MATCH who has very good credentials for what is an even but not overly strong three-year-old race. Picked up some black type at his last run before his break the end of the winter carnival, placing in Listed Phoenix at the Sunshine Coast over a mile, but he did win at his second race start there over 1300m in impressive fashion, and has a good trial hitout over 1000m under his belt leading into this. He will undoubtedly improve off this run but I think he’ll have enough class to get home. Fair odds at $3.90. TRAIL OF GLORY hasn’t taken on any stakes-level opposition to date but still lines up here shooting for a hat-trick. Grinding win last time at Ipswich over a small field after getting through the heavy ground here the run prior in easy fashion. Too close to toppy betting at $4.60. MYWIFESAIDNO is a colourfully named gelding who hit the line hard here first-up to grab his maiden, then lost the race on protest at the Sunshine Coast over this trip. Good each way hope but if the topweight picks up where he left off last prep they won’t beat him.
Strange line-up with very little class six form around any of them, but what it does have is a boatful of speedsters engaged and that will play into the hands of REBEL MISS. She hasn’t run a bad race all prep down in Sydney and her recent formlines are miles better than anything her opposition can throw up. Beaten a head by Bandipur at Randwick two starts back and that horse won again in Melbourne last weekend, then ran on strongly from the tail but was no match for Soothing who looks set for a very bright spring. She’s down on the limit here and with Girl In A Million, Colinelle, Darktown Strutter and at least three others all lead or on-pace runners she will surely get the perfect tempo. Switch her out into clear air on straightening, give her two strides to balance up, then bang. Good price at $4.20. Of the rest, I suppose it’s a question of whose tank will be empty hundred out and who’ll still running on fumes. Although I’ve tired of backing COLINELLE, he does have a class edge on the rest of the speedy types and with a good fresh record should be in money somewhere at the end. Only beaten a length or so his last two stakes appearances and although drawn awkwardly is very consistent around this level. GIRL IN A MILLION is very fast, and she could potentially run out a strong 900m, but from the outside draw is going to be gasping for air with about 50m go.
I was very annoyed to see Endless Days blouse SHOTACROSS THE BOW two weeks back as I’d been keeping him safe for weeks, and just when I thought I had the timing right with Shotty, Endless Days puts it all together. Nevertheless it was a strong effort by Shotacross The Bow to be there at the end, and it the second time in a row he’s had settle for second behind a much improved run after San Telmo ran home over the top of him the run prior. Two consecutive runs like that means he is back in business and we have to stick with him here at the $6.00. I was a little surprised to see FIGHTING TEO above him in betting, but he is a genuine danger. Narrowly beaten in a 3yo Bm73 a few weeks back but those can be deceptively weak, as Toowoomba Bm70 in which he ran third – beaten a length – the run prior. Not all that far away in a Group Three at the Sunshine Coast three starts back but he will be giving my bloke a good start on the bend. BRONZED VENOM is very hot and cold but he did stick well in Endless Days’ race the other day. If he runs up to that is right in it.
Unlike Fighting Teo in the previous, the Sydney forming surrounding REACH FOR HEAVEN is very strong and he does look the one in what is a pretty moderate 1MW. Carried 60kg into fourth spot behind Star Of Monsoon first-up and was close-up behind last week’s winner Paret, then got within three lengths of Intuition in a Bm82 under 59kg. Down grade, down in weight so it’s no surprise to see him down in price but the $3.40 is still palatable with Jeff Lloyd taking the ride. LOOKS LIKE ELVIS has been going very well this campaign and if I could be guaranteed a saloon passage in the straight I’d probably have him on top at the $4.80. Ran home to beat a reasonable 3yo line-up at Doomben last start but is dropping back 1400m tomorrow and I’m not sure the Gold Coast is his go. From inside draw he will either have to pray for luck along the fence or hook out and hope he doesn’t run of steam skirting round the outside the field. Either way he will need some good fortune. If you’re looking for a blowout hope then SNAPPER fits the mould. Ran an absolute cracker behind Irish Optimism over a mile two runs back then, predictably, didn’t have the zip to finish off dropping very sharply 1100m here last time. Back out to 1400m, virtually every decent run in his life has been run at this circuit, and at 25/1 is the upset runner.
It’s been a long time since LORDAG has enticed me in, but he has been racing so well in open class and this is not only a drop grade back to a Bm90, it’s very weak Bm90 at that. Huge run in the Tatt’s Mile at Listed level two starts ago behind Fit For Purpose, then did himself proud again weeks pushing the in-form Sabkhat to a head. Frankly he looks thrown in here after claim with just 57kg and at $3.90 I am, tentatively, back his corner. The run of MAGSTOCK in the Sabkhat race at Doomben was just too bad to be true. Really bad. Thankfully for fans and those connected to the horse he had thumps so we can hopefully rule a line through result as an anomaly, because his first two runs in the country were simply outstanding. Made ground in stakes races over the carnival and but for the thumps run I’d be all over him here. They’re offering $7.50 and I would strongly advise to have a saver on him at that quote because if he’s right he’ll beat Lordag no doubt. LORD COCONUTS also comes through the Sabkhat race and finished about a length and a half from Lordag on the line. He’s grand campaigner around this level and worthy of inclusion in trifectas but it has been an awfully long time between drinks.
DIVINE MESSENGER has been in great form and with no Linlithgow engaged tomorrow gets her chance to score a well deserved victory. No disgrace to be beaten by that runner last time, nor did she lose any admirers when runner-up to the up and coming Winter Bride run prior. Gets a soft run here from draw with up to a 5kg headstart on some of the main chances looks great value at $4.60. SISTA ACT has to give her just 3kg thanks to the claim, and did run a race when nabbed by Goodonya Sonja last start. She can be bit hard to catch but may able to control the race to suit herself from the good gate and will give them something to run down. BOGEY MAN finished just behind Divine Messenger at Doomben when going for his hattrick but meets her a couple worse for being beaten. He’ll need luck from the wide draw and will be giving two mares a healthy start.
I’ve been a fan of SOLD FOR SONG since I can remember and she does go extra well at her first couple of runs off a break, so we’re jumping on at the $5.50. If you had to price her her latest fresh run when beaten a nose in the Group Two Gilgai Stakes at Flemington you’d have her $1.50 against these, but she makes life awfully difficult for herself with her racing pattern settling out the back and rocketing home. At end of her previous campaign up here she finished just behind the placegetters in the G1 Tatt’s Tiara so is a classy mare. Let’s just hope she gets long enough in the clear to wind up and run over top of them. DAL CIELO did well finish a half length from the talented Trekking last weekend after chasing home another smarty in Tactical Advantage the run prior. He has a big weight and will need almost as much luck as the mare sitting well back off the speed in running, but he has been racing against stronger company and should go close. MISHANI EL LOBO is still eligible for easier races but does well fresh. Closeup in a strong Magic Millions race here January behind I’m A Rippa and has drawn to advantage.
We don’t get many class two up here at the main Saturday meeting and with 24 acceptors the barrier draw has really knocked some of the chances for six. SAXTON ROCK is one of the lucky ones who has drawn a gate and although he never placed first-up is coming off trial win at the end of July. At his last run here he ran a good race over this trip behind Oneness in a class three and comes in under the minimum with just 56kg. Looks as good as any at $5.50. If you want to have something going for huge money in your quaddie can throw ARTERIAL down the bottom who should secure a run despite being sixth emergency. He made ground here first-up over an unsuitable trip and is a nicely bred type who has drawn well. This isn’t particularly he’s nice roughie at $21. JAKE’S HILL is having his first run up here after disappointing both Australian starts at Flemington back in May. Stakes-placed in Britain many moons ago but would prefer to see how he goes up here before jumping on.