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The Sportsman Weekend - - Eagle Farm A Detailed Formguide - WITH GREG SPLETTER

Race 1

No idea what to ex­pect from our first meeting back at Ea­gle Farm, es­pe­cially with the pos­si­bil­ity of ei­ther some rain – or even tor­ren­tial rain – to­day and to­mor­row, but there’s a bit of value to be had on what is very com­pet­i­tive card. Look­ing to go round the favourite in this open­ing ju­ve­nile race and set­tled on the next one down POCKET PIS­TOL who chased a smart one home last start. Nice ef­fort to keep in touch with Mis­hani Spirit who is still un­beaten, and they broke the clock at 50.98s for the 900m that day com­ing home in 33secs neat. At his pre­vi­ous run he bolted in at Doomben af­ter be­ing has­sled for most of the trip by a cou­ple out­side him and he had good freshen-up lead­ing into 900m dash. Cur­rently $35 from the sweet draw that’s a great each way bet in a race with very few win­ning hopes. Un­doubt­edly the one to beat is the toppy DU­BI­OUS who never looked like picking up leader in the Breed­ers’ Plate back in Septem­ber but lunged late to nab him on the line. The beaten brigade did look or­di­nary I’m not sur­prised given win­ner clocked 56.45secs which is re­ally zip­ping along for a young­ster. Shaken up to win his trial the other day (nice run the third horse, Splin­tex) and from an awk­ward draw I’m happy to risk him and back mine each way. COUN­TRY COCK­TAIL im­proved sharply last time when bat­tling on be­hind the im­pres­sive Be­taima but the im­prove­ment was ex­pected af­ter do­ing plenty wrong on de­but. Drawn badly but she does have abil­ity and as afore­men­tioned there aren’t many here that can win.

Race 2

MIS­HANI VAIDRA picks her­self here af­ter run­ning on strongly last time be­hind ru­n­away win­ner Lota Creek Gold over 2000m. She had won two of her first three runs back al­ready over shorter trips but gave ev­ery in­di­ca­tion last start that she will run out 2200m here. The horse beat the run prior, Sofie’s Gold Class, won at her next out­ing and she looks thrown in af­ter the claim, ris­ing just a half kilo into an easier race. Drawn well and while she’s not over the line the $3.20 will prob­a­bly dis­ap­pear be­fore race­time. SHOCKFACTOR made up good ground last time in an easier Bm75 at Doomben af­ter a good ef­fort be­hind She Goes Pop at her home track. It’s taken her while to wind up this cam­paign but she has hit her straps now and did show up in good com­pany when last in work. Nice one for the mul­ti­ple at $15. BROCSON has had 50 starts but has struck a pur­ple patch of form and is en­ti­tled to be a bit shorter than $21. Beat She Goes Pop at the Gold Coast two runs back then al­most caused a boilover at 60/1 when nar­rowly de­feated by Ruby Guru in a Bm75. Needs some luck from the wide gate but def­i­nitely over the odds.

Race 3

Talk about déjà vu, ev­ery runner here is com­ing out of the same race, a three-year-old open over 2000m at Doomben won by A MAN TO MATCH and he’ll beat them again to­mor­row. Sat well off the speed as is his cus­tom but ex­ploded in straight to put four lengths on them. He had been promis­ing some­thing big like this at his pre­vi­ous four out­ings and now that he has put it all to­gether it’s a brave man who would back against him. He’s been well found at $1.55 but he beat them so very eas­ily that I can’t see much hope of them turn­ing the ta­bles, and on a day with very few stand­outs he does look great an­chor bet. TRUSTY LAD was well sup­ported to beat the favourite last time but had no an­swers. He did hit the line nicely but was still a long way be­hind A Man To Match on the line and cou­ple of ki­los turn­around isn’t nearly enough to tempt me away from the fave. CEOL NA MARA ac­tu­ally beat hot­pot home two runs back but copped a seven length turn­around last time and while she’s a place chance she won’t beat the top pick again.

Race 4

Tricky race with many chances and no stand­outs. In the end I’ve been en­ticed into ELIXIR at $10 who re­sumes to­mor­row and did show up at his first cam­paign. Didn’t run a su­per time on de­but at the Gold Coast back in July but he cov­ered ex­tra ground from the out­side gate and did win com­fort­ably in the end. Bat­tled on be­hind Mit­tere and Ef Troop at his only other run can show up fresh. ARCHER’S PARA­DOX showed for us at cricket score odds first-up run­ning a good race be­hind Zoustyle, then picked up nice con­so­la­tion with a com­fort­able vic­tory at her next run against much easier op­po­si­tion. Drawn hope­lessly here for racing style else I’d prob­a­bly have had her on top. Still a chance but needs luck and doesn’t re­ally ap­peal at $5.00. MAYBE MARKLE gave them a can­ing second-up at Doomben two weeks ago win­ning by six af­ter a rea­son­able firstup run at the provin­cials. May have been flat­tered by the wet track and if there is rain about to­mor­row she’ll take some catch­ing.

Race 5

Awe­some Pluck was su­per im­pres­sive last start but he will have to get on his bike to run down MY GIRL HAY­LEY who has ev­ery­thing go­ing for her to­mor­row. Af­ter promis­ing plenty she re­ally come good over the last 12 months, win­ning four races for sea­son and plac­ing in much stronger com­pany than she strikes to­mor­row. Run down by the tal­ented Sh­e­sees Ever­thing two runs be­fore the break when giv­ing that girl 4.5kg, then was close-up be­hind the fly­ing Tver­sky and Fiery Heights in gen­uine open grade. Her best runs are fresh from a break, she likes to lead and should just about get there from bar­rier two, she is com­ing off a trial win at this cir­cuit last week and I can’t see anything here that is likely to push for­ward and take her on, un­less the sixth emer­gency Ooshe gets a run. She’ll get a cou­ple of cheap sec­tion­als ap­proach­ing the bend and at $10 is a mile over odds. Should be nearly half that. AWE­SOME PLUCK gave us heads-up two runs back cov­er­ing a ton of ex­tra ground be­hind Cado­gan who has since franked the form with an­other big win. Damian Browne was con­tent to give them a huge start last time sit­ting back at the tail but picked up very quickly to win with a leg in the air. That’s good news. The bad news is that he has a few hur­dles to over­come to­mor­row, not least of which is a fur­ther drop back in dis­tance from 1200m to 1000m which won’t help. He also taking on sev­eral run­ners here who have ac­quit­ted them­selves well in open class and even stakes com­pany, and will be giv­ing sev­eral of them a tidy start. If the track is play­ing for swoop­ers it brings him right into it sure, but if on-pac­ers are get­ting their chance then I’d have him pegged as the lay of the day at $2.35. MALVERN ES­TATE was nar­rowly beaten in the Listed Gold­mar­ket ear­lier year and typ­i­cally runs a bold race fresh. He does go very well on wet ground so if the heav­ens open up he will give it a shake. Each way claims at the $11 oth­er­wise.

Race 6

Very im­pressed with the first-up win of SUR­PRISE BUL­LET at Doomben two weeks ago and in a race with many chances he is as good as any. Cov­ered a lot of ex­tra ground in the run and was very wide on the turn but kept com­ing to win by a widen­ing length and a quar­ter line over the 1350m. Couldn’t one last prep but fin­ished second at ev­ery out­ing against pretty good com­pany up around the 2000m trips. No doubt he’ll strip fit­ter here and will be run­ning on strongly again. Wet or dry he will be hard to hold out. AL’S KING­DOM won two of his first three runs back from a break be­fore lead­ing them up at Doomben and knock­ing be­hind Sofie’s Gold Class. He’ll be burn­ing some fuel early on to take up a for­ward po­si­tion again and at $3.60 he’s not an at­trac­tive bet­ting propo­si­tion. Can win but will be run­ning on empty over the last 100m. RAN­CHO MON­TOYA will prob­a­bly sneak into the field to­mor­row and, although hard to catch, has a very good A-game when he brings it. Hinted at some­thing bet­ter last start when a clos­ing third on his home track and has drawn to get a nice trail along the fence to­mor­row. In­clude at the $15.

Race 7

Very happy to stick with my bloke DESERT MAN here in a typ­i­cally com­pet­i­tive class three plate. Drew poorly last start and did some ex­tra work in the run still stuck on gamely home fin­ish­ing just a half a length from Un­likely Story. Out of sorts at Ip­swich the run prior af­ter storm­ing home to win a sim­i­lar race to this Doomben. Drawn per­fectly to lead on his ear or trail the speed and with only 55.5kg on his back af­ter the claim will have plenty to of­fer in straight. Su­per each way bet at $16 for a horse that must surely still have a lit­tle up­side af­ter four runs back from two years spell. LA SCOPA has bit of class about her and did show up in the au­tumn, plac­ing in the Princess Stakes at the Sunny Coast over a mile. Made up good ground when re­sum­ing in town last time but there are cou­ple of ques­tion marks. She has drawn awk­wardly, she may have been flat­tered by the wet track and she might be look­ing for fur­ther now, but she does have abil­ity I’d be find­ing a spot for her in your quaddie. SASSO CORBARO is un­der the odds at $4.50 hav­ing to jump from gate 17 but she has shown up in stronger com­pany in the past. Placed be­hind Sa­va­tiano back in May and wasn’t all that far from Pier­ata Al­izee in stakes grade this time last year. Looks as though she is get­ting ready for an­other shot at Magic Mil­lions day and will im­prove on what­ever she does to­mor­row.

Race 8

In­trigu­ing Bm90 field and I think they’ll go like the clap­pers up front so I’m look­ing for some­thing to sit off them and fin­ish over the top. To that end jump­ing back onto HINGUS ROSE who I al­ways thought was a wet tracker but she has been go­ing su­per on top of the ground through­out this long cam­paign. Won two in the wet back in spring but hit the line strongly at Doomben three weeks ago to beat a de­cent Bm85 field with 56.5kg. She’s still back at the 1200m here which I think is key to her chances and from gate nine she will find some cover back be­hind the speed bat­tle have plenty in hand for the run home. Nice each way hope at $9.50 and if the rain comes she’ll be half that. BIG TREE does show some ticker he drops down to just a kilo over the limit to­mor­row for his third-up run. Gave Bat A Kat some­thing to catch at home last time un­der the big weight and you know with him en­gaged that there will be no cheap sec­tion­als up front. Spent two years off the scene and is com­ing good, throw him in as a knock­out hope at $17. BAT A KAT was in­cred­i­bly dis­ap­point­ing when we were on first-up but atoned at the Gold Coast, run­ning down Big Tree to score nicely. That hor­rid first-up re­sult was his first time out of the top two and although drawn poorly will be com­pet­i­tive again.

Race 9

I was dis­ap­pointed to see OINK set­tling so close to the speed last start and here’s hop­ing they let him drift back run along un­der his own steam to­mor­row. Out­stand­ing first-up run when he pushed the tal­ented Femme Fire­ball over 1350m then drew the out­side gate and went for­ward and, to be fair, was only beaten a lip on the line. From eight to­mor­row he is more likely to be back in the ruck and while he does tend to be a mag­net for bad luck, with a clear crack at them will go close. CADO­GAN was ex­tremely im­pres­sive last start but is very short at $2.45. Ran away to win by a bit over two lengths but he up in weight here, up in dis­tance and class. Can win but he will find this a dif­fer­ent ball­game to those he beat the other day. SNITCH isn’t bad odds at 10/1 for a horse that is look­ing to make it six in row. Beat Oink last time and has drawn well again.

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